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Turron - a Spanish Themed Christmas Gift
Turrón an authentic Spanish Christmas gift.
Turrón, the classic Spanish candy, a must have for Christmas.
If you're planing to have a Spanish Christmas this year, then for sure turrón has to be on the table. Although you can buy turrón all through the year in Spain, it is especially during Christmas time that the shops are full of all kind of different flavours of turrón.
Maybe the most famous turrón is known as turrón de Xixona (Jijona) a city north to Allicante in the province of Valencia. It is a soft type of turrón, Turrón is comparable with a almond nougat, but it is a bit different in taste. I love it, the Spanish candy is always a real treat on Christmas.
Turrón the Alicante is a hard type of turrón also called turrón duro. The difference with turrón de Jijona is that the one from Alicante has whole nuts in them which gives the pasta made of honey and egg time to harden. The turrón de Xixona is made of crunched almonds added to a honey, egg and sugar mixture,which makes the paste soft.
Hard (duro) turrón de Alicante.
The hard turrón, or turrón duro is in a way more practical to store then the soft one. I love them both, perhaps even more the turrón blando but when I go abroad I mostly buy turrón duro for my friends.
Turrón de Jijona.
Not all turron blando (soft) are allowed to wear the label Turrón de Jijona. Only the (often) family business that are around Jijona are entitled to do so and under qualified conditions.
Where is Xixona.
Xixona is together with Alicante THE place for original turrón.
Turrón de Casinos a great Christmas Gift.
Turrón for Christmas. un regalo de navidad.
I have the luxury to live close to Casinos, a small village that's famous for it's turrón. There is no big turrón factory like in Jijon but dozens of small turrón shops ( and peladillas, sugared almonds) that make their own home made turrón.
You can get all year around the blando (soft) turrón or the duro (hard) variation. Around Christmas time there are much more flavours for sale. And my favourite is by far the whisky-chocolate one, although the 3 chocolate is a good second...
Last year I wanted to go out and buy some bread at the local bakery in Casinos. I'm living about 8 km away but it took me an hour to get there...What happened? I was in a traffic jam. Apparently Casinos had their yearly turrón fiesta. All the shops had stands outside and the pueblo was lightened by Christmas lights all over the main road.
The bakery was closed, but that was not really a disappointment, there where enough titbits to choose from. In the end I went home with a bag of two slices of turrón, peladillas (sugar coated almonds) and some bread sticks covered with sunflower seeds.
It was an unexpected but pleasant surprise, sadly though I did not have a camera with me. (no I do not have a fancy phone, just the one you can use for making a phone call.;-)
Spanish Themed Gifts - Lets go and get some Turrón
Casinos, A famous turrón village north of Valencia.
This is one of the many turrón shops in my village. As the Valencian area is also well known for it's ceramic tiles. Many of the shops have a beautiful tiled façades. The town is a bit strange, it has something of a deserted Wild-West hamlet feel, especially at two pm. There will be nobody on the streets. This was the time I took the photo. Hence the empty seats. Everybody is escaping the heat of the day and having a lunch (comida) and then a small siesta.
Almond tree in blossom.
Flowers and almonds
The Legend of Turrón.
The legend of Turrón
In Jijona there is a legend that tells us about the origins of turrón
Once upon a time a king married a Scandinavian princess. As was custom the princess had to leave her home country and come to sunny Spain. But the princess was very sad at not being able to enjoy the beautiful landscapes of her home country full of eternal snow.
The king, desperate to see his new queen happy planted almond trees on all his land around the castle.Thus, when the almond trees flourished, they imitated the landscape with all kinds of shades of white, so that everything seemed covered with snow, and the princess would be happy again. From that moment on, the people of Xixona learned to pick the nuts of the almond trees and to treat and develop it into delicious turrón.
How to make Turrón, the easy way.
Ingredients turrón blando (soft)
- 1/2 cup glazed sugar
- 1 cup honey
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 cups roasted almonds
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 lemon lemon peel
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Make your own Turrón in 8 easy to do steps.
- Separate the egg yolk. Cut the almonds, melt 3 cups of sugar and 1 cup of honey in a pan. Mix these two until they become one substance.
- Put the egg yolk in a mixer and mix it with 1 cup of glazed sugar mix it until the egg yolk becomes white and stiff. Pour the egg yolk mixture bit by bit into the sugar-honey mixture and stir until it is all mixed well. Put the roasted almonds, lemon peel and cinnamon in and blend it in. In the end pour the mixture in a tray with baking foil and level it. put another baking foil on top and put a weight on it (like a brick of milk) and set aside for 7 days.