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Canary Islands Food: What to expect

I’m just back from a lovely hiking trip to Tenerife and it was my absolute pleasure to experience some of the culinary delights on offer.

From Pulpo (Octopus) to Mojo (Green & Spicy Sauces), the foodie in me was extremely satiated.

In fact, I was blown away by the consistent quality of Canary Islands food and their home-grown red and white wines.

One thing I will not forget is the pride that the Canarians have in their local produce and their enthusiasm for using local, fresh ingredients.

It’s easy to see why Canary Islands food is one of the best-kept secrets in the world…

Breakfast in the Canary Islands

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! Especially when you are preparing for a day of hiking.

For us, breakfast was served slightly later than it would be in Ireland, starting at the time of 8 am and continuing to 10 am approximately.

For a day of hiking, it’s important to load up on proteins and carbs and there was plenty of both on offer. From fresh fruit to freshly baked bread and pastries we were very happy with the offerings in both of our hotels in Tenerife.

Porridge is my favourite breakfast and while they don’t seem to offer the hot version, they have the oats and cereals aplenty to load on top of your natural yoghurt.

Breakfast is buffet style but our servers were more than happy to offer us cooked eggs and meat and also freshly brewed coffees.

We have found that in Tenerife, Gran Canaria and La Gomera, all of the hotels we stayed in prided themselves on their breakfast offerings.

Here’s what you can expect on offer at breakfast in the Canary Islands:

Fresh local fruits, yoghurts, cereals including oats, bread, pastries, cheeses, cold meats, cooked eggs & selection of freshly squeezed juices, teas & coffees.

There are vegetarian and vegan options as well, just ask your friendly server.

Lunch in the Canary Islands

I would actually say every meal throughout the day on the Canary Islands feels like it’s the most important meal of the day.

Lunch especially is given a great ceremony with long, lazy lunches being the norm. For me, this was my favourite meal!

Typically we would arrive back to our destination at around 1/2 pm after a 4/5 hour hike.

After a quick shower and relax, it’s time for lunch! A quick check on TripAdvisor for some quality, nearby restaurants and off we went!

Dining out in the Canary Islands is such good value that it’s easy to do it for lunch and dinner! Plus it’s OK to treat yourself to a delicious lunch and a glass of wine after hiking all morning! That’s one of the benefits of an active holiday.

Some of the specialities we had for lunch were:

Pulpo (Grilled Octopus), Mojo sauces (Green & Red Spicy), Papas arrugadas (wrinkly potatoes), fresh pesto, grilled cheeses (especially Goat’s cheese which is locally sourced), calamari, oysters & potato croquettes.

Dinner in the Canary Islands

And then from approximately 8 pm we had dinner.

In Ireland, we are definitely not used to eating so late at night!

On Tenerife, we would have dinner until past 10 PM most nights.

While it was a small challenge to get used to eating so late at night and having trouble getting to sleep (at least that’s what happens to me), I loved every minute of our dinners.

As I said, the Canarians take such pride in their local food, they would talk to us (in Spanish) about the food, the wine and the history and story behind it.

My Spanish speaking colleagues would then translate the stories for me and I was in awe of how little the rest of the world knew about the story of Canarian food.

On the other hand, I found that they do indeed keep the best for themselves, including their wine!

What to expect for dinner on the Canary Islands:

Local vegetables and the freshest seafood, lamb, beef, chicken, and many vegetarian options – lookout for their wild mushrooms!

If you have any questions about Canary Islands Food or what to expect from your walking holiday on the Canary Islands, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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