Pincho of the Week: Setas

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The other day my Spanish friends brought me to another classic pincho bar on the famous Laurel street in Logroño. Quite literally a hole in the wall, Bar Cid is easy to miss and I hungrily hop from my favorite champi mushroom pincho to my favorite brochette with goat cheese, Spanish ham and raspberry sauceTraditional in every sense of the word, Cid has vines and grapes dangling from the wooden beam ceiling to the same duo of older men who diligently tend the bar every night. Serving up one pincho, and one pincho only, grilled mushrooms (setas a la planca), you can’t go wrong here.

In Spain, there are about 10 different words for mushrooms, it makes remembering all my fungi vocabulary in Spanish rather challenging. One could easily order poisonous toadstools accidentally. As I understand it, setas are basically all types of mushrooms that aren’t the typical white button-cap ones (champiñon).

Oozing, old-world charm, I hop on inside the tiny, packed bar for the first time. Ordering a big plate of grilled mushrooms to share between friends, we sip cider and make small talk until our setas arrive. Piled high and steaming on a big plate, you could easily mistake these fat big mushrooms for grilled meat. With a toothpick you skewer one or two and pack it between two slices of baguette to make a mini sandwich. As you bite into them, grandma’s secret garlic wine sauce seeps into the bread making it a filling and delicious dinner.

Make sure you try these mushroom pinchos if you ever make it to Logroño! What’s your favorite mushroom? How do you like them cooked?

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