One of the best things about Spanish cuisine is its simplicity. So many of Spain’s most famous dishes are made with just a few ingredients. And with such high quality products— from the produce to the cheese, to the seafood and meat— keeping things simple lets each ingredient shine.
When we make a sandwich here in Spain, or what’s called a “bocadillo,” we have the same philosophy: less is more. Which is why our best bocadillo uses only three key ingredients and nothing else.
Each of the ingredients in our Spanish sandwich works together for a reason. Every product is native to Spain and grows freely throughout the country, specifically in the south. Families have been eating this simple combination of ingredients for generations, growing, pressing, and raising them with their own two hands. Though it was peasant food at its origin, we have come to recognize it as one of the most luxurious combinations on the planet. People even cross the ocean to come and try it!
Luckily, you can also try this phenomenal combination in the comfort of your own home. Here’s how to prepare and enjoy one the world’s best sandwiches:
Choose the Right Bread
It’s important to choose the proper ingredients in the sandwich—every single part matters, and the bread is no exception. If you’re going to be layering on slices of carefully cured Iberian jamón, they deserve to be accompanied by a gorgeous piece of bread.
There are all sorts if styles you can use, but the most important thing is to make sure it’s a homemade, artisan bread or one made with natural leaven (sourdough is an example of natural fermentation), and not a cheap slice from the grocery store, which is likely full of chemicals and preservatives.
For this sandwich, we also love a fresh baguette. The crumb of the baguette will hold all the olive oil without leaking through. It also gives a nice outer crunch, contrasting with the soft chew of the Iberian ham.
You can serve the bread at room temperature or toast it. Or, once you’ve built your sandwich, you can warm it in the oven for a few minutes.
Slather on the Oil
In Spain, olive oil flows like a river. And extra-virgin olive oil is the only olive oil we ever use, whether it’s for cooking, dressing a salad, or adding flavor and texture to our bocadillos. Extra-virgin olive oil is the first oil that comes out of the olives as they are pressed. This pure oil contains so many health benefits and is full of incredible flavors.
Again, you want a quality olive oil for this sandwich, one that has a good bite but is soft and balanced at the same time. Check out specialty shops for the best olive oil and look for ones straight from Spain for the most authentic combinations.
Once you’ve got your olive oil, slather it on freely until your baguette is coated (but not totally dripping) with Spanish olive goodness.
Layer on the Iberian Meat
The star of this bocadillo show is none other than the Acorn-Fed 100% Jamón Ibérico. Make sure to let the jamón come to room temperature before building your sandwich. Then, layer on thin slices of this luxurious meat over the olive oil-soaked bread, and prepare yourself for a spectacular Spanish experience
1 large baguette
2-4 tablespoons high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, preferably Spanish
- Slice the baguette lengthwise.
- Optional: toast the baguette in the oven until golden brown.
- Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil on the interior of the baguette until it soaks in.
- Layer ham over the bottom layer of the sandwich and top it with the other half.
- Cut evenly into 4 portions or cut it into 8ths for an appetizer.
- Serve and enjoy!