Flamenquines, pork and ham rolls breaded and fried in olive oil, are typical from Andalusia (see pronunciation here). Some say they originated in the province of Córdoba while some others claim it’s in Jaén where they were first prepared. Anyhow, like many breaded foods, they are a children’s favorite.
The most popular meat used in making this tapa is thinly sliced pork, mostly from pork leg, but other meats can do too like veal and chicken. Serrano ham, the ubiquitous Spanish cured ham, is used as a second layer of goodness and some versions include sliced cheese too.
The most typical flamenquines are long, somewhat around 8″-10″ (20-25 cm), and they are sliced in portions if they are to be served as a tapa. We’re preparing a smaller version in this post not only because it’s easier to manipulate for frying, but because it’s cuter.
- 4 very thinly sliced pork leg fillets or 8 loin fillets
- 4 cured ham slices
- Lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove
- AP flour for basting
- 2 large eggs
- Bread crumbs or panko
- Virgin olive oil for deep-frying
- If the fillets are not thin enough, pound them with a kitchen hammer to taste. They should be quite thin.
- Mash the garlic in a mortar, add minced parsley and some drops of lemon juice. Mix and smear the garlic paste on the pork fillets at least a couple of hours before preparing the flamenquines to marinade. Keep them covered in the fridge.
- Take the pork out of the fridge and place a slice of cured ham on top of each fillet. No salt is needed as the cured ham is quite salty.
- Roll both layers together carefully and tightly. Press the final lip of the pork fillet to keep the flamenquin sealed and prevent it from unrolling on frying. But if you're unsure of its tighness just pierce the flamenquin with on or two tooth picks to keep it in place.
- For the breaded coating place 3 dishes one beside the other: the first with the flour, then the dish with the beaten eggs and lastly the dish with the bread crumbs.
- Take a roll and dip first in the flour, then in the egg and then in the breadcrumbs. Cover it thoroughly.
- Fry a couple of flamenquines at a time in the hot olive oil until golden brown. Take them out to a dish covered in kitchen paper to absorb some of the fat and serve while hot.
Tips for perfect flamenquines or pork and ham rolls
- This is simple and unpretentious fare, so there’s no need to use the best quality meat. Also, don’t waste the best quality Ibérico ham on this. Or you’re going to make Ibérico pigs weep.
- The meat fillets used for flamenquines must indeed be quite thin, so don’t hesitate to pound them with a kitchen tenderizer if yours are not thin enough or to your taste. But don’t overdo it, the meat shouldn’t be as thin as a carpaccio either.
- Don’t omit the marinading step, it does add a lot of flavor.
- Although many favor coarsely ground bread crumbs like panko, try flamenquines with homemade finely ground bread crumbs. Just for a change.
- Top the pork and the ham with a thin slice of cheese and roll the whole thing for a different but also delicious version of flamenquín.
- Natives from Córdoba recommend to always acompany flamenquines with French fries and a salmorejo, a thicker cousin of gazpacho. We’re sure you won’t regret it.
So you thought Spanish tapas were not a thing for children or picky eaters… there you have it, flamenquines, breaded pork and ham rolls are true crowd-pleasers. Just try them and come back here to tell us about it. We’re sure you’ll love them.