Torreznos are thickish strips of bacon or pork belly that are traditionally prepared fried in oil. This tapa is named after the word torrar, which means roasting, bringing something close to the fire so that it browns.
There are many types of bacon in the market, but the bacon from Soria, an ancient Castilian town, is said to be superb. In fact, torreznos de Soria are one of the most popular, besides being considered one of the jewels of Sorian gastronomy.
Torreznos come mainly from the pork belly. After frying it is characterized by a crispy and golden crust, covered with bubbles, with some lean meat and fat underneath to give it a lot of juiciness. A true delicacy that easily conquers any palate.
Torreznos can also be found under the name of “chicharrones” in the Andalusian area.
Torreznos are most frequently served as a tapa or garnish, although you can also find dishes in which they are used as a main ingredient.
- 1½ pound (675 g) marinated bacon
- Sunflower oil
- Let the bacon dry at room temperature for 24 hours.
- Pour the sunflower oil into a large frying pan, enough to cover the bottom (about 2mm/3/4" deep) and place over medium low heat.
- Meanwhile, cut the bacon into strips with a thickness of 1"/2.5cm.
- Place the strips in the frying pan with the skin side down.
- Fry for 30-40 minutes in batches on medium high heat. You will need enough oil to cover half of the torrezno. Add more if necessary.
- You will notice that bubbles begin to appear on the skin. The final cooking time will depend on the skillet and heat used.
- Once you see the skin covered with bubbles and a textured and golden crust, remove the torreznos from the saucepan with a slotted spoon.
- Remove from the saucepan, drain on kitchen paper or a colander and let it cool slightly before eating.
Tips for the best torreznos ever
- In Spain bacon is sold in 3 formats: raw, marinated or pre-cooked. In any case, make sure it is a good quality bacon:
- If using raw bacon, we recommend you to marinate it first.
- If it is marinated, you will only have to follow the steps instructed in our recipe and
- if it is pre-cooked, you’ll only need to fry it in very hot oil, ignoring the first step.
- The most complicated part of this recipe is to achieve a crunchy, bubbly crust. For best results, let the bacon dry at room temperature for 24 hours. The drier the crust is, the higher it will rise and the crunchier the result. To make torreznos never fry the bacon straight from the refrigerator.
- The torreznos should not be fried at a very high temperature, otherwise they will burn and the crust will not rise.
- It is not necessary to use olive oil to fry them, sunflower oil will yield good results.
- If you object to frying them, they can baked in the oven. Preheat to 480ºF (250ºC) and place with the skin facing up, leave for 20 minutes or until crisp. However, to be honest, the best way to make torreznos is the traditional way.
- Torreznos can be eaten warm or cold.
- To preserve torreznos store them in an airtight container once they are at room temperature. They’ll be perfect for 2-3 days.
These torreznos are a really easy way to start the weekend. Don’t forget to accompany them with a good wine or cold beer. Cheers!