Meat and poultry Recipes Recipes for special occasions Soups, stews and legumes

Escudella or Catalan stew

Escudella or Catalan stew


  • Half
  • 240 minutes
  • For 8 people
  • 2.2 € / person
  • · ·

Escudella recipe . If there is a recipe that is repeated in practically all the autonomous communities. Even though it is different it is basically the same, that is the stew.

Throughout the Spanish geography we find cooked in multiple variants.

From  the Galician stew , the Basque stew , this traditional  Catalan escudella , the Asturian pot , the famous Madrid stew , the mountain stew, the rotten pot, the Canarian stew , the Andalusian stew ola pringá , the Maragato stew , the gypsy pot from Murcia , the preacher’s dam in Aragon, and one that I am sure I forget … all variants of the same idea, the cooked .

This is especially so if we pay attention to the definition given by the RAE Dictionary of this dish. Dish prepared with pork or beef, vegetables and vegetables, almost always chickpeas and potatoes. To which we sometimes add some sausage, which is cooked together.

The escudella is, together with the cannelloni of San Esteban , the most traditional Christmas dishes in Catalonia, present in many of the houses around this time, and often during the rest of the year. It is a recipe full of tradition and flavor.

Preparation of the Catalan escudella

  1. We put desalting meats that are salted or salted, covering them with water 24 hours before the moment when we are going to start preparing the escudella. I have put the piece of ham, the claw and pork knuckle and the pork back to soak changing the water 2 or 3 three times over the course of 24 hours.
  2. The rest of the meats and bones, except the one that we will use for the ilota and the butifarras, we put the day before in water with vinegar so that they bleed out and clean impurities.
  3. The night before we put the chickpeas to soak with a handful of coarse salt and warm water. Regarding the water temperature. Traditionally it is said that chickpeas must come into contact with water.
  4. We cover with warm water and leave them at room temperature, never in the fridge. The next day we strain the chickpeas and reserve.
  5. When we have all the ingredients ready we put in a very large pot all the bones and meats except the chicken and the butifarras. We cover with water, about 7-8 liters and put to cook.
  6. We have to take into account that the amount of liquid will be greatly reduced during the process. In my case I have used my biggest pot and all the water I could put.
  7. We cook the meats for 1 hour removing the foam that will be created. Add the chicken carcass, the chicken backbone and the stilt and continue cooking for 1 more hour.
  8. Add the soaked chickpeas and all the vegetables except the potatoes. We continue cooking 1 hour more.
  9. We can put the chickpeas to cook in a cloth bag so that, after serving, we can do it separately.
  10. Add the potatoes and the sausage and cook for 30 more minutes. At this time we check the salt and add whatever is necessary.

Final presentation of the escudella

  1. We remove the meats and vegetables from the casserole, placing them in separate sources.
  2. We strain the broth to remove remains of the meat and we have a clean soup.
  3. At this point we can continue the process or store the broth in the fridge, once it has cooled, until the next day. Thus we get all the fat to rise and solidify on the surface.
  4. We can easily remove it to get a lighter, less fatty and just as tasty dish.
  5. We prepare the pilots . For this, in a bowl we mix all the ingredients except the flour. The two minced meats, a good bunch of parsley, the chopped garlic clove, the whole egg, the breadcrumbs and the salt. Knead until you get a homogeneous paste and form 4 or 5 elongated portions with your hands.
  6. We flour each of the balls and reserve.
  7. We put the broth on the fire and when it begins to boil add the pilots.
  8. We cook the meat balls for about 20 minutes and remove them.
  9. We add the pasta, the cookies, to the broth and cook it for the time indicated by the manufacturer.
  10. We serve the escudella in individual dishes adding part of the pilots cut into slices.

On the table we will also put a source with the rest of the pilots. Others with the meats that we can take advantage of and the butifarras and another with the vegetables and the chickpeas.

Do not forget to make the famous meat pilots of the escudella. Or also to prepare delicious  cooked croquettes . You can see all the photos of the step by step  in the next album .

Curiosities about the escudella

  • A typical Catalan cooking recipe, especially at Christmas time, which is called Catalan escudella , escudella i carn d´olla .
  • It is a broth that is prepared with prolonged cooking of a series of vegetables, chickpeas, butifarras and different types of pork, veal and chicken.
  • Accompanying this broth and as part of its essence a pilota is prepared, a kind of large and elongated meatballs that are cooked in the soup.
  • To top off the plate the cookies, pasta similar to the classic sharks but of great size. All this is part of the escudella, but on the one hand we serve the soup with cookies.  On the other the vegetables and chickpeas and on the other the pilots with the rest of the meats.
  • This dish thus served with the accompaniment of the meats that were used to prepare the escudella. It is called escudella i carn d´olla, literally with the meat of the pot.
  • There are many variants of this traditional dish. Some people prepare small meatballs instead of 3 or 4 large ones. Who serves them in the soup and who does it separately. Others add roasted peppers, cooked on hot coals, and who cooks the pilota inside the cookies. And so it serves, small variants all of the same essence.
  • Be sure to enjoy all the stews, casseroles, stews and yummy soups in our recipes for soups and stews .

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