Something happens in Madrid when temperatures start to dwindle (and most likely in many other Spanish cities) as a curious phenomenon takes place at breakfast time. Let’s have a look at the cafeterias, shall we? Surprisingly, the café con leche is no longer that popular as a deeper, richer and more comforting drink has replaced it: a wonderful hot chocolate! Which comes of course with a side of lovely churros.
Nothing can beat the great combo of chocolate con churros (or churros con chocolate). This delicatessen is quintessential to Madrid life, and one of those must things to do in Madrid, especially at winter- autumn time.
Many guides would tell you about monuments, museums and sightseeing, but if you want to feel like a real madrileño and savour the local life, you can’t go wrong by indulging into a nice cup of hot chocolate accompanied by fresh-made churros.
If this is your first time visiting Spain, you should be aware that most of Spanish social life takes place outdoors —even on wintertime! —. For this reason, when temperatures drop down, meeting up with your peers in a churreria sounds like a great plan for a comfort afternoon or evening rendez-vous. Time will fly, and before you realize, the time to leave will (sadly) have arrived. But your tummy will be thankful for these guilty pleasures.
Even though the Madrid bible says that “winter = chocolate con churros”, they can actually be enjoyed throughout the whole year — after all that’s what churrerias are for, aren’t they? Even though it’s more common to enjoy the chocolate con churros in autumn and wintertime, you won’t be stopped should you fancy a chocolate con churros in the middle of the summer. (Just bear in mind that most likely temperatures will easily reach 40ºC - 104ºF during Madrid summer.)
I have mentioned before that churros con chocolate are consumed at breakfast time, but merienda (supper) is also a very valid option. Moreover, this might actually be rush hour for churrerias, as the morning rush is over, and we can enjoy some more relaxing time. It is also very common to get up early on a Sunday morning and go to the churreria to fetch some fresh, recent made churros (bye brunch, hello churros con chocolate). Ah, the little pleasures of life!
About churros, chocolate and the churrerias
You’ve probably noticed some new words here and there and you might be curious about them. No worries, let’s have a look into them (by the end of this post you’ll be a pro in the fine art of churros ;)
The churrerias are the place where churros are made. They operate as a cafeteria but they are specialized on offering churros — as a matter of fact, they are fresh made on that establishment — and chocolate. Opening time is very wide, from very early in the morning till late in the evening (everybody is welcome to have churros, from early risers to night owls).
These next places don’t offer gluten-free churros (as far as I am aware), but I think I should at least mention them, as they are considered THE churrerias par excellence in Madrid:
Churros are basically a deep-fried dough made from wheat flour. That’s why the traditional churros are a no-no for coeliacs. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy them, does it? As I always say, coeliacs can eat everything as long as proper ingredients are used. In this case, it’s as simple as using a non-wheat, gluten-free flour.
Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of its ingredients; the elaboration of good quality churros is truly an art that not everybody can master. It’s common to use sunflower oil, but for me, being an olive oil lover, there’s nothing like the fragrant flavour given by olive oil.
Churros vs Porras
Sometimes people use these two names interchangeably, but madrileños are very picky about using them properly. Eating chocolate con churros is truly an art!.
Churros have a laze shape; are rather thin, crunchy and have very characteristically marks.
Porras, though also crunchy, resemble a straight stick, have no marks and are thicker.
Up to now, I was only able to find gluten-free churros, but no porras.
Churros and porras are considered in Spanish cuisine as “frying pan fruits” (I’m making a literal translation here for “frutas de sartén”, the Spanish denomination). All deep-fried doughs would be under this umbrella. For example: buñuelos, pestiños, torrijas, bartolillos, churros y porras. This cooking technique was already mentioned in some Spanish middle age cooking books!
If you are interested in this topic, you can check:
Plaza Jacinto Benavente 2, Madrid | Metro Sol; Metro Tirso de Molina; Metro Antón Martin
Churros do not belong to their regular menu, they are instead a welcoming specialty during autumn- winter months.
What a better way to warm up upcoming #winter season than enjoying a nice #chocolate mug with #churros!! |□❄️⛄️☕□️□| Qué mejor manera de entrar en calor en este frío invernal que con un buen #chocolate caliente con #churros #hotchocolate #hotcocoa #dessert #foodielove #CeliciosoBakery All #GlutenFree #SinGluten #Goodthings #cozy #hogareño #invierno #Labuenavida #yummy #delicious #delicioso #glutenaciouslife #hotchoclaye #glutenacious #dessert #hot #glutenfreefollowme
Una foto publicada por Glutenacious Life (@glutenaciouslife) el
Churros: €0,5 each piece (No longer available) | Piece of Roscón de Reyes: €2,90 (only available around Ephiphany Day) | Hot chocolate: €3
Additional Note: At the time of this blog post, Celicioso is no longer offering gluten-free churros.
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