Spanish Breakfast

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

breakfast happens twice in Spain. The worker, businessman, or schoolchild has a first breakfast early, before leaving in the morning: bread or toast served with coffee with lots of milk and sugar, or cocoa with milk. People who do hard physical work might start the day with something more substantial: a garlic soup or thick porridge …

Schoolchildren and workers alike set off with a bag containing a second desayuno, to eat between 10 and 11 o'clock in the morning. The businessman or office worker probably slips out to the corner café. This second breakfast may be café con leche, coffee with milk, with a sweet roll or biscuits, galletas, dunked in the coffee, or una tostada. A tostada is much more than a thin slice of toasted bread; it's usually a small roll split lengthwise and toasted on a grill, sometimes rubbed with garlic and tomato, then served with a plate of olive oil for dipping….