Spanish Menu Glossary

Since I did all the work at my other blog I thought I might as well publish this glossary here as well. I derived all these terms from actual restaurant menus in Spain that I found  online and from other sources.

Skip my explanation of how I compiled this glossary and  jump to glossary, (click the link), along with phrases and explanation of terms where literal translation is not useful is my end goal of this project. In my earlier versions of the list I simply sought out glossaries, anywhere I could find them on the Net (see revision history below). This resulted in several problems:

  1. often there are errors in other peoples’ glossaries, often in spelling (esp. diacritical marks; also is singular or plural and genders, that is not using the base word one would find in proper dictionaries;
  2. regional differences within Spain lead to confusion in either different spellings (or words) for the same food item or different items from the same word;
  3. “Spanish”, of course, includes a lot more of the world than just Spain and often there are severe contradictions between different countries and I really want to stay focused on Spain (although hongo (mushroom) has appeared in Spanish menus and this is primarily a Latin American term, so even the Spanish are inconsistent on this);
  4. many words don’t really have a translation to English because either they stand for themselves (e.g paella, chistorra) or a literal translation is not helpful (as already mentioned, see post on revuelto);
  5. some colloquial or slang terms are used in Spain just as they are anywhere and these don’t translate easily; and, 6) sometimes food items are modified with brands or regional terms (de Tuledo) that are quite relevant but not terms that can be converted to English.

So many glossaries you find, as I did (the hard way) are fairly inaccurate and/or fail to provide much help for menus. This is the main reason I’m starting my v3.x effort from menus of restaurants in Spain. While I could look for all restaurants I could find I’m tying my search to my virtual walk along the Camino de Santiago. I started this project when I’d reached just west of Pamplona. So I’ve now covered about 20 miles (now about 400 miles as of v4.0 revision) looking at every restaurant along the way (they have to have webpages and then menus at the website to be useful). So I’ve covered the towns of Cizur Menor, Zariquiegui, Uterga, Muruzábal, Obanos, Puente la Reina, Mañeru, Cirauqui and figured I had enough raw material for my first cut at a glossary (English translation mostly based on Google Translate with some lookups in spanishdict.com). This is a fairly complete list based on no more than extractions from menus. Some words I’ve left off this list as they take more research to get them properly defined (e.g. “beef”, lots of different names for this, and cuts of meat). Other words the literal translation and/or quick searches are insufficient to get a useful (if there is one) definition. For v3.2 I have included terms from many restaurants in Palencia.

So this is v3.2 and I have a lot more to do to even begin to have anything approaching the final list but already my list is better than many of the others you can find on the Net.

Now this is updated to v3.3 where I’ve included some words from a print dictionary.

Please note this post and this post for the process I’m doing to enhance this glossary to the v4.0 version (coming soon, done on 31Mar2019).

Notation in this glossary includes: a) {x|y} which means a letter (sometimes word) can be either x or y, usually this is for gender in adjectives and thus {a|o}, b) [x] means an optional letter (sometimes) word, usually [s] or [es] for plurals (Note: the number in Spanish word may not match number in English word), and, c) stuff inside () is some sort of explanatory comment, not part of the translation per se.

Caution: This glossary comes from many sources and may have errors as I have not done the complete analysis (a large corpus with software collation) and careful editing to eliminate errors (or sometimes typos or spelling). While this list is less good than my goal it may be better than many other lists you’ll find.

 

a elección of your choice
a elegir to choose [from]
a la brasa charcoal grilled; blackened (on charcoal), cooked over embers; rotisserie
a la espalda on the back (split fish pressed flat, fried on skin side)
a la gallego in Galician style
a la parrilla grilled (on grill grate); broiled
a la piedra cooking on a hot rock
a la plancha grilled (on iron plate); grilled on a griddle ; broiled on a hot surface
a la riojana In La Rioja style
a la vasca Basque style (garlic and parsley)
a la vizcaína In the style of the Bay of Biscay.
a su gusto to your liking (as in how well done)
abierto open
abril April
abuela Grandma’s, Grandmother’s
abundante abundant
acedera Sorrel
aceite de oliva olive oil
aceite de oliva virgen virgin olive oil
aceite de oliva virgen extra extra virgin olive oil; quality cold pressed olive oil with an acidity level below .75 percent and a distinctive flavor
aceite[s] oil[s]
aceituna[s] olive[s]
acelga[s] Swiss chard
achicoria chicory
acompañad{a|o}[s] accompanied
acompañamiento garnishes. trimmings
adobad{o|a} marinated; pickled
afrutad{o|a} fruity
agosto August
agri{a|o} sour, bitter
agridulce[s] sweet and sour; bittersweet
agrios citrus fruits
agua water
aguacate avocado
ahumad{o|a} smoked; smoked foods
ajada garlic and paprika sauce
ajete[s] young garlic[s]; Garlic shoots pulled from the center of the new bulb in spring
ajillo garlic sauce
ajo[s] garlic[s]
ajoarriero a pasta made with potatoes, garlic, egg and oil
ajoblanco cold almond soup from Andalusia, often served with grapes
al ajillo in/with garlic; fried with garlic
al carbon charcoal
al centro in the center (of table, i.e. sharing)
al estilo X X style
al gusto to taste, presumably doneness, i.e. cooked to order
al horno baked; roasted/baked in the oven
al peso by weight
al vapor steamed
albahaca basil
albaricoque[s] apricot[s]
albariño (white) typically from Galicia; Albariño wines are aromatic, crispy and with a distinctive aroma. It produces acid wines, but also with high glycerine that gives them a silky texture.
albondiga[s] meatball[s], also meatloaf
alcachofa[s] artichoke[s]
alcaparra[s] caper[s]
Alemania Germany
alergia[s] allergy
alga[s] seaweed[s]
alimento[s] food[s]; groceries
aliñad{a|o} seasoned; dressed
aliño[s] dressing[s]; seasoning[s]
alioli with mayonnaise; A popular sauce in Catalonia made from garlic oil (garlic mayonnaise)
alitas wings
allergic{o|a} allergic
alli-olli alioli
almeja[s] clam[s]
almendra[s] almond[s]
almíbar syrup
almuerzo[s] lunch[es]; brunch[es]; hearty second breakfast[s]
alt{o|a}[s] high
alubia[s] bean[s], typically dried (can be white, red or black)
amarg{o|a} sour
amarill{o|a}[s] yellow
anchoa[s] anchovy
anguila[s] eel[s]
angula[s] baby eels; elver; eels (dish is fried eels with garlic)
anís aniseed
añojo yearling
antigua old, ancient, vintage
anzuelo hook (as in caught by)
aperitivo[s] appetizer; aperitif
aperitivos fríos cold appetizers
apio celery
apreciad{o|a}[s] valued, high regarded, esteemed, prized
arándano[s] blueberry[ies]; cranberry[ies]; bilberry[ies]
arbequina one of the more unique-looking olives as they have a light-brown exterior color and the have a firm flesh and a deliciously light and fruity taste.
arenque herring
aroma[s] aroma[s]; fragrance
aromáticas herb
aros rings
aros de cebolla onion rings
arroces rice (plural, singular is arroz)
arrope syrup
arroz rice (while nominally singular really this would apply to a group of individual rice grains)
artesan{a|o}[s] artisan
arzúa-ulloa pale yellow cow’s milk cheese comes from northwestern corner of Spain ; creamy soft and is cured for a minimum of six days.
asad{a|o}[s] roasted/roast
asador steak house; roasting pan; rotisserie, spit
asiento seat
asturian{o|a} Asturian
atún tuna
auténtica real
ave[s] bird[s] (to eat)
avellana[s] hazelnut[s]
avena oats
azafrán saffron
azúcar sugar
azúcar glas icing sugar
bacalao cod
bacon bacon
baj{o|a}[s] low
baja temperature low temperature
balsámico[s] balsamic
bandeja tray
barat{o|a} cheap
barbacoa barbecue
barra baguette; loaf of bread
batido[s] milkshake[s]
bebida[s] drink[s]
beicon bacon
bellota acorn
berberecho[s] heart clams; cockles
berenjena[s] eggplant;[s]; aubergine[s]
berza cabbage
besugo sea bream
bistec “Beef steak.” Steak is not common in Spain where the lack of pasture means that cattle are usually killed at a young age for veal. On the whole “beefsteak” indicates that it is likely to be an inferior cut or it would be specifically named.
bizcochitos biscuits
bizcocho sponge cake
blanc{a|o} white
bland{o|a} soft, as in soft boiled eggs or soft ice cream.
boca mouth
bocadillo[s] sandwich[es], snack[s]; Spanish sandwich, usually made from length of barra /baguette (or on a crusty white breadroll)
bocaditos baby fingers
bocado[s] morsel[s]
bocatas sandwich (like sub, i.e. on roll)
bodega[s] winery; bar; store in some place
bogavante lobster
bola[s] ball[s] (scoop for ice cream); Ball-shaped, as in meatball. It can also mean a croquette bound with béchamel sauce and deep-fried or little balls of cheese
bollería bakery [goods]; pastries pastry
bombilla bulb
boquerones anchovies
borracho[s] cookies soaked in liqueur
borraja borage
botella[s] bottle[s]
brasa[s] lit: embers, barbecued or fire grilled  (also a la brasas)
brasead{o|a}[s] charcoal-grilled; braised
brazo arm
brécol broccoli
brocheta[s] skewer[s], skewered meat; a skewer or spit and the food cooked on it.
brotes shoots, sprouts
buey beef
bufet buffet
buñuelo[s] light fried pastries; fritter, donut; hollow puffs often served as a tapas. They can be sweet, using apricots or savory, including versions made with salt cod, cheese, ham, shellfish, brains or celery.
butifarra Catalan sausage;  a mild pork sausage (white or black in color) used extensively in Catalán cooking.
caballa mackerel
cabeza[s] head[s]
cabra goat
cabracho red scorpion fish
cabrales blue veined cows milk cheese from Asturias, aged in the mountain caves and wrapped in tree leaves. It is strong but not bitter, smoother, sharp, slightly salty taste, and less biting than a French Roquefort.
cabrito[s] kid goat
cacahuete[s] peanut[s]
café con leche coffee with hot milk; espresso coffee with steamed milk, café au lait \ coffee with plenty of milk, hot or cold
café[s] coffee[s]
calabacín zucchini
calabaza pumpkin, squash
calamar[es] squid[s]
calamares en su tinta squid in ink
caldo stock
calidad quality
caliente[s] hot
calle street
callos tripe (even ‘guts’)
camarer{o|a} waiter/waitress
camarón baby prawns
campo propio our own field
campo[s] field[s]
caña[s] small serving of draft beer
canela cinnamon
canelone[s] cannelloni
cangrejo[s] crab[s]
canónigos corn salad (aka lamb’s lettuce)
cantábrico Bay of Biscay
carabinero[s] scarlet prawn[s]
caracol[es] snail[s]
carajillo coffee with brandy
caramelizad{a|o}[s] caramelized
caramelo[s] caramel[s]; sweet[s]
carbohidratos carbohydrates
cardo cardoon
careta de cerdo pigs’s face
carne[s] meat[s]
carrillera[s] cheek[s]
carta a la carte menu
cartilago cartilage
casa house
caser{a|o}[s] homemade
castaña[s] chestnut[s]
castellan{o|a}[s] Castilian
catorce 14, fourteen
cava Spanish sparkling wine, i.e. “champagne”
cazón dogfish, shark
cazuela[s] casserole (the dish itself but also reference to food cooked in this dish); Terra cotta earthenware dishes which are glazed on the inside and normally unfinished on the outside.
cazuelita small casserole dish
cebolla[s] onion[s]
cebolleta[s] chive[s]; green onion[s]; scallion[s]
cebollino chive
cecina cured and dried pork; smoked beef (which?)
celíac{o|a}[s] celiac
cena[s] dinner[s]
centeno rye
centollo spider crab
cerdo pork
cerebro brain
cereza[s] cherry[ies]
cero 0, zero
cerrado closed
cervecería beer hall
cerveza de barril draft beer
cerveza rubia lager
cerveza[s] beer[s]
chacinas cold meats
champán champagne
champiñones mushrooms
chapatas sandwich on small roll (like ciabatta)
chicharro horse mackerel
chipirón baby squid
chipiron[es] squid[s] (Note, accent changes in plural)
chistorra cured pork sausage typical of Aragon and Navarre
chocolate chocolate
chopitos baby squid, probably also means battered and fried
chorizo the signature Spanish sausage: ground pork, flavored with paprika, garlic, salt and pepper. It comes in fresh, smoked, or cured versions. Spanish chorizo differs significantly from Hispanic or Mexican. \ strongly flavoured, spicy spanish pork sausage
chorizo de Matanza chorizo from particular location of origin
chuleta[s] chop[s], cutlet[s]
chuletillas chops, small chops
chuletón T-bone steak
churro[s] a fritter, deep-fried tube of batter, often eaten with thick drinking chocolate (chocolate a la taza) \ fried pastry cut into lengths; deep fried tubes of dough covered in sugar
cien 100, hundred
ciervo deer (venison)
cigala[s] crayfish; sea crayfish; Dublin Bay prawn; king prawns
cinco 5, five
cincuenta 50, fifty
ciruela[s] plum[s]
cítric{o|a}[s] citrus
clásic{a|o} classic
cliente[s] client[s], guest[s], customer[s]
cochinillo suckling pig
cocid{a|o}[s] cooked (also boiled; steamed); long simmered stew based on chickpeas or other legumes, which includes vegetables, meats, and embutidos / sausages; wholesome Madrileño stew
cocina kitchen; cuisine
cocinad{o|a}[s] cooked
coco coconut
cococha[s] fleshy part of jaw (of fish)
cóctel cocktail
codornices quail (plural, irregular so a separate entry)
codorniz quail
cogollo[s] heart[s], bud[s], sprout[s]
col cabbage
cola tail
coliflor cauliflower
combinado[s] combination[s]
comedor dining room
comensales guests
comer to eat
comestibles groceries
comida[s] meals, food, lunch
compartir to share
composición ingredients
compota compote
compota de manzana applesauce
coñac brandy
concha shell
condimentad{o|a} seasoned
conejo rabbit
confitad{a|o}[s] confit; candied
confitería candy store
confitura[s] jam[s]
conserva canned food
consistencia consistency
consultar disponibilidad check availability
contramuslos thighs
copa cup
copita small glass
corazón[es] heart[s]
cordero lamb
cordero lechal suckling lamb
cornozuelo olive variety is very demanded by the people who know it, for its great texture and flavor, usually available a few months to the year.
cortado espresso with a dash of milk
cosquera (koskera) traditional Basque stew
costilla[s] rack, ribs
crema catalana Catalan cream (similar to the french crème brûlée but with milk)
crema de leche coffee creamer
crema pastelera custard (aka pastry cream)
crema[s] cream[s]
cremos{a|o} creamy
crianza aged
criollo Creole
cristal crystal
croqueta[s] croquette[s]; a deep fried ball of bechamel (white sauce); breaded croquettes filled with a thick bechamel, incorporating chopped ham, boiled egg, chicken.
cruasán croissant
crud{o|a} raw
crujiente[s] crunchy, crispy
cuajada curd
cuarenta 40, forty
cuatro four
cubierto[s] silverware; a piece of cutlery
cuchara[s] spoon[s]
cuchillo[s] knife[ves]
cuello neck
cuenta bill
cuerpo body
curación curing
curad{o|a} cured
cuscus couscous
D.O. an official system of quality control and protecting the quality and authenticity of specialty products and wines
dado[s] cube[s]
dátil[es] date[s]
de corral free range or farmyard
degustación tasting; tasting or sampling of food or drink
del día of the day
delicia[s] delight[s]
delicios{o|a}[s] delicious
denomination de origen an official system of quality control and protecting the quality and authenticity of speciality products and wines
desayuno[s] breakfast[s]
descafeinado decaffeinated
deshidratados dehydrated
deshuesad{o|a}[s] pitted (olives, fruit); boned (meat)
desnatada low-fat
destilería brewery
diario daily
diciembre December
diecinueve 19, nineteen
dieciocho 18, eighteen
dieciséis 16, sixteen
diecisiete 17, seventeen
diente[s] tooth[teeth]
diez 10, diez
dinero money
disfrutar to enjoy
disponible previo encargo available upon request
disponible[s] available
doble double
doce 12, twelve
domingo[s] Sunday[s]
dorada gilt-head bream
dos two
dulce[s] sweet[s]
dur{o|a}[s] hard; tough; stale
ecológic{o|a}[s] organic
elaboración preparation
elaborado artesanalmente handcrafted
elegir to choose, to select
embutido[s] sausage[s], a generic term for sausage meats, whether cured, cooked, or fresh; selection of cold sausages; cold cuts
empanada[s] tart[s] or pie[s] with meat; In Galicia a flat, thin pie or turnover with a variety of fillings such as tuna with peppers and tomato.
empanado breaded
en fritura fried
en temporada in season
encargo custom (order)
encebollad{o|a}[s] cooked with fried onion, especially liver or tuna
encina oak
encurtid{o|a}[s] picked; pickled products
endibia[s] endive[s]
eneldo dill
enero January
ensalada[s] salad[s]
ensaladilla salad
enter{o|a}[s] whole
entrada[s] entrance[s], also starters, hors d’oeuvres
entrante[s] starter[s]
entrecot entrecote
entremeses appetizer, hors d’oeuvres
envuelto wrapped
erizo de mar sea urchin
escabechad{a|o}[s] pickled
escabeche[s] pickling marinade, usually made of oil, vinegar, peppercorns, bay leaves, and/or spices.
escalfado poached
Escocés Scottish
espaguetis spaghetti
esparrago triguero wild asparagus
espárrago[s] asparagus
espárragos enteros blancos white whole asparagus
especiada spices
especial[es] special
especialidad[es] specialty[ies]
especias spices
espeto skewered
espina fish bone
espinaca[s] spinach
espolvoreado sprinkled
esponjos{o|a} fluffy/spongy
espuma foam
espumoso sparkling (in wine context)
estilo style
estofad{o|a}[s] stewed; stew
estómago stomach
estragón tarragon
estrella[s] star[s]
excelencia excellence
exquisit{o|a}[s] exquisite, excellent, delicious
factura bill
febrero February
festivo[s] holiday[s]
fiambres cold cuts
fideo[s] noodles; thin macaroni-like pasta ; small noodles
filete[s] steak[s]; fillet[s]
fin de semana weekend
fin{a|o}[s] thin
finas hierbas fine herbs
flambead{o|a} flambé
flan flan; cream caramel
fonda refreshment stall; lodging house, in Catalonia, also implies cheap restaurant
fondo pan juices after cooking meat or fish
forma[s] shapes
frambuesa[s] raspberry[ies]
Francesa French
fresa[s] strawberry[ies]
fresc{a|o}[s] fresh, cool
frí{a|o}[s] cold
frit{a|o}[s] fried; fried in oil;often coated in egg and flour before frying as in fish and shell fish
frut{a|o}[s] fruit
fruta de la pasión passion fruit
fruta del tiempo seasonal fruit
frutos secos nuts
fuente[s] fountain[s]
fundido melted
gabardine batter coating
galleg{o|a} Galician, of or in the style of
galleta[s] biscuit[s] (aka cookie[s])
gallina[s] hen[s] usually, sometimes chicken
gamba[s] prawn[s] (medium size, other names tied to size)
gambones large shrimps
garbanzo[s] chickpea[s]
garnacha (red) grape of Spanish origin, found in the Northeast area, La Rioja, Navarra, Aragón and Cataluña;  normally blended with Tempranillo. This grape can produce fruity wines, with raspberry aromas.
gaseosa[s] soda[s], soft drink[s]
gazpacho cold tomato and cucumber soup with bread and onion, in Andalusia this is a cold vegetable soup; in La Mancha it is a hearty stew.
gelatina jelly
ginebra gin
glasead{o|a}[s] glazed
gluten gluten
gofres waffles
gordal olive that stands out for its great size; culinary characteristics do not stand out, but it is their great size that makes them very demanded.
gota[s] drop[s]
gramos grams
granada[s] pomegranate[s]
granizado[s] water ice; iced drink
gratinad{a|o}[s] gratinated (au gratin)
gratuito free of charge
Griega Greek
grosella currant
guarnición[es] garnish[es]; side dish[es]
guayaba guava
guijuelo A town in Spain that is the center of premium ham production
guindilla[s] pepper[s] (generically), but more commonly \ long, moderately hot Spanish chilis – especially popular in the Basque Country. Picked while still green, they are most commonly sold preserved in vinegar
guisad{a|o}[s] stewed ; braised, fried and then cooked in liquid
guisante[s] peas, usually green peas
guiso[s] stew[s]
guisotes stews
gulas fake small eels /elvers
haba[s] broad bean[s]
habitas bean (small)
hamburguesa[s] burger[s] (doesn’t have to be beef); hamburger[s]
harina flour
harina de maíz cornmeal
hech{o|a}[s] made; done (in how well done sense)
hechos en casa homemade
helada frost
helado[s] ice cream
hervid{o|a}[s] boiled; sometimes also cooked
hielo ice
hierba[s] herb[s]
hierbabuena mint
hierbas provenzales Provencal herbs
hígado liver
higo[s] fig[s]
hinojo fennel
hoja de parra grapeleaf
hoja[s] leaf/leaves
hojaldre puff pastry
hojiblanca olive picked when green, they have a distinctive strong, bitter flavor
hongo[s] mushroom[s]
horario hours
hornead{a|o}[s] baked
hornillo stove (small or portable); burner or ring in cooktop; hotplate
horno oven
huerta[s] small local garden; vegetable patch, especially a vegetable-producing garden close to the city
huerto[s] orchard, vegetable garden
hueso[s] bone[s]
huev{o|a}[s] egg[s]; sometimes cured and pressed fish roe, normally tuna or grey mullet
huevo duro hard-boiled egg
ibores goat’s milk cheese from Extremadura, medium-flavored raw goat’s milk cheese that strengthens in flavor while it ages for two months, resulting in a hard, tangy and salty cheese with an oil and paprika-rubbed rind.
idiazabal a pressed cheese made from unpasteurized sheep’s milk, usually from Latxa and Carranzana sheep elaborated in the mountains of Basque Country; flavor is intense, balanced, clean, consistent with a marked character that remember the matured sheep milk flavor.
incluid{o|a}[s] included
infusion de hierbas herbal tea
ingrediente[s] ingredient[s]
intenso intense
invierno winter
Irlandés Irish
Italiana Italian
jabugo[s] a town and municipality located in the province of Huelva famous for quality Spanish cured ham
jalapeño jalapeño
jamón ham
jamón ibérico de bellota premium acorn-fed Iberian ham from free range black hoofed Cerdo Ibérico pigs; sometimes just called ibérico[s]
jardín garden
jarra jug, pitcher
jengibre ginger
jerez sherry
jijas minced pork to make sausages, cooked as tapa
judia verde green beans
judías beans, sometimes dry beans
judías verdes French (green) beans
judío Jewish
jueves Thursday
jugo[s] juice[s]
jugos{o|a}[s] juicy
julio July
junio June
jurel horse mackerel
kebap kebab
kokotxa[s] fleshy part of the jaw; gelatinous “cheeks” of hake, cod [really Basque, Castilian is cococha]
lacón dried pork product
lagarto lizard (cheap cut of meat)
láminas slices
langosta lobster; spiny-lobster; rock lobster
langostino[s] large prawns; king prawn; jumbo shrimp, tiger shrimp; crayfish
lasaña lasagna
lascas slices (or chips)
lechal[es] unweaned (or recently weaned) young animal[s]
lechazo[s] (unweaned) baby lamb[s]
leche milk
lechuga[s] lettuce[s]
legumbre[s] legume[s]
leña firewood
lengua tongue
lenguado sole
lenteja[s] lentil[s]
licor[es] liqueur or liquor; spirits
liebre hare
liger{o|a} light, as in light (small) meal
lima lime
limón lemon
limonada soda
liofilizada lyophilized (aka freeze-dried)
lomito[s] tenderloin[s], loin[s]
lomo[s] loin[s] (and particular type of dried pork)
loncha[s] slice[s]
lubina[s] bass; sea bass; sea trout
lunes Monday
macarrones macaroni
macedonia de frutas fruit salad
macerad{o|a}[s] macerated
madurad{o|a} matured
magdalena[s] cupcake; muffin; sweet breakfast cupcake
mahón from the island of Menorca (Balearic island) and is a mild semi-soft, cow’s-milk cheese with a unique taste-a little like a Gouda.
mahonesa mayonnaise
maíz corn
majuelo young vine (aka hawthorn)
manchego sheep’s cheese made only from the whole milk of Manchega sheep reared in the La Mancha region. This semifirm cheese has a rich yet mellow flavor, runs the range from semi-soft  to hard and sharp, from a salty and smooth semi curado to a crystallized and spicy curado.
manillas lit: handles/hands, but probably feet; trotters
manita[s] trotter[s], i.e. feet, usually from pigs
manitas de cerdo pork trotters
mano[s] literally hand, but on animals foot, paw, forefoot; trotters
manteca butter
mantequilla butter
manzana[s] apple
manzanilla chamomile tea; also well known type of olive: are the queens for their excellence. They stand out for their good texture, adequate size and good detachment of flesh and bone
mar sea, ocean
maracuyá passion fruit
margarina margarine
marinad{a|o}[s] marinated
marisco[s] seafood (generic, although often shellfish)
martes Tuesday
marzo March
masa dough
masa madre sourdough
mayo May
mayonesa mayonnaise
medallones medallions
Mediterránea Mediterranean
Mejicana Mexican
mejillón mussel
mejillones mussels
mejor[es] best; better
melocotón peach
melón melon
melos{o|a}[s] sweet
membrillo quince, quince jelly
menestra vegetable stew; vegetable medley made mostly in the spring, originally from Navarra. It may also contain lamb or chicken.
menta mint
menú del peregrino pilgrim’s menu, found along the Camino de Santiago, usually a bargain meal similar in structure to menu del día
menú[s] menu
mercado market
merienda snack (light meal, like British tea)
merluza hake
mermelada[s] jam[s]
mero grouper
mero salvaje wild grouper
mesa table
meses months
mezcla mix
mezclum mesclun
miel honey
miércoles Wednesday
miga[s] fried bread crumb[s] with garlic, chopped panceta, tocino, red pepper.
migas del pastor lit: shepherd’s crumbs (seasoned bread crumbs)
milhoja[s] mille-feuille, aka napolean
mínimo minimum
mitica legendary
mixt{a|o} mixed
módena balsamic vinegar
mojado wet
molino mill
mollejas gizzards; sweetbreads
mollete a soft round white flatbread; muffin
molusco[s] mollusk[s]
monastrell (red) the typical grape of Murcia and the south of Valencia. It produces powerful wines with great structure and a strength somewhat higher than normal.
montaña mountain
morado purple
moras blackberries
morcilla a Spanish blood sausage [aka blood pudding]  (made with paprika and rice) often used in stews and sliced and fried as an accompaniment to eggs or as an appetizer. Often combined with rice or onion.
moreno brown
morro[s] snout, lips, cheeks, nose
morrón bell (green) pepper
morunos lit: Moorish, kebab of marinated pork
mostaza[s] mustard
mulo mule
mundo world
músculo muscle
muslitos nuggets
muslo drumstick
naranja orange
nata cream
nata montada whipped cream
natilla[s] custards[s],  cold custard[s]; cream custard[s]; vanilla cream[s]
navaja[s] razor clam[s]
navarro from Navarre; Navarrese
nécora[s] blue crab[s]; velvet crab[s]; small crab[s]
nectarina nectarine
negra[s] black
ñora a generic name for a variety of different peppers
novedad novelty
noventa 80, ninety
noviembre November
nueces nuts; walnuts
nuestr{o|a}[s] our[s]
nuestras especialidades our specialties
nueve 9, nine
nuez nut; walnut
número size
oca goose
ochenta 80, eighty
ocho 8, eight
octubre October
ocupad{o|a} taken
ofrecer to offer, many conjugations seen on menus
ojo eye
oliva olive
once 11, eleven
oporto port or port sauce
orégano oregano
oreja ear
orejones dried apricot
orujo a potent Spanish liqueur used sparingly in cooking which is especially popular in Galicia. Similar to Italian grappa which has a lower alcohol content.
ostra[s] oyster[s]
otoño autumn
otr{o|a}[s] other[s], another
oveja sheep
padrón small pepper, with an elongated, conic shape. The taste is mild, but some exemplars can be quite hot. Named for a municipality in Galicia where they are grown.
paella a saffron & rice cassarole garnished with rabbit, chicken, mussels shell fish dish cooked in a flat shallow pan, also called a paella \ famous rice dish seasoned with saffron and usually made with seafood, meat, and vegetables
pagar to pay
paladar[es] palate[s]
Palentina Palencia style
paleta[s] shoulder[s]
paletilla shoulder
pan bread
pan artesano artisan bread
pan de fabiola type of bread from Palencia
pan integral whole grain (or wheat) bread
panadería[s] bakery[ies]
panceta cured pork belly; fatty pork or streaky bacon
panecillo[s] roll (of bread)
papada chin; dewlap
para compartir to share
para picar to nibble
parmesano parmesan cheese
parra vine
parrilla grill, broiler
parrillada grilled (plate of); barbeque
pasas currants or raisins
pastel[es] cake[s]
pastelería pastry shop
pata de mulo mule leg (type of cheese in Leon)
pata[s] leg
patata panadera baking/baked potato
patata[s] potato[es]
patatas fritas french fries
pato[s] duck[s]
pavo turkey
pechuga[s] breast
Pedro Ximenez a sweet sherry with a raisin like flavor, made from grapes of that name Used in cooking and as an after dinner aperatif.
penecillo roll
pepinillo[s] pickle; gherkin
pepino cucumber
pepitas chips
pepito meat filled sandwich
pequeñ{o|a}[s] small
pera[s] pear
percebe[s] goose (gooseneck) barnacles scraped from the sheer granite cliffs of Galicia
perdices partridges
perdiz partridge
peregrin{o|a}[s] pilgrim[s]
perejil parsley
perfumado perfumed
perrito [caliente] hot dog
pescado[s] fish
pez fish (animal, pescado is processed ingredient)
pez espada swordfish
picada[s] minced, ground; pounded mixture of herbs, spices, garlic, bread, biscuits, etc., characteristic of Catalan cooking
picante spicy
picar to chop, mince; to nibble on (lit: peck at)
picatostes croutons
pico[s] small toasted bread sticks served with tapas
picoteo nibbling or snacking
picual olives small in size, but they certainly have a deep flavor and offer equal parts of bitter, sweet, and peppery notes (uncommon as table olives)
piel skin
pierna[s] leg[s]
pieza[s] piece[s]
pimentón paprika
pimienta ground pepper, black pepper
pimiento[s] pepper[s] (bell, green, sweet)
pimientos de temporada seasonal peppers
pimientos del Piquillo Piquillo peppers
pimientos verdes green peppers
piña pineapple
piña caramelizada caramelized pineapple
pincho[s] skewer[s]
piñones pine nuts
pintxo[s] the Basque word for tapas. The best come from towns along the coast stretching from Bilbao, Zarautz to San Sebastian
pipa de calabaza pumpkin
piquillo[s] a variety of chili having a sweet taste with no heat, typically roasted over embers, peeled and packed in olive oil
pistacho[s] pistachio[s]
plancha lit: iron – griddle (typically heat iron plate or “flattop” grill, perhaps just a skillet)
plátano banana
plato fuerte main entree
plato[s] dish[es] (although also literally plates); course (of a menu)
pluma lit: feather, a cut of pork in front of loin
pochada poached
pochas a type of Spanish string bean, originating in the regions of Rioja and Navarre which are served ripe, rather than dried and re-hydrated.
poleo de minta peppermint tea
pollo chicken
pollo frito fried chicken
polvo powder
pomelo grapefruit
por encargo on request
postre[s] dessert[s]
potro horse or colt
precio fijo fixed price
precio[s] price
prensado pressed
presa a flavorful shoulder cut
primavera spring
primer first (course)
primeros platos first courses
propina tip
proteinas proteins
pudín pudding
puerro[s] leek[s]
pulguita[s] small closed-baguette sandwich[es]
pulpo octopus
puntillitas battered and fried tiny squid
purés de patata mashed potatoes
px a sweet sherry with a raisin like flavor, made from grapes of that name Used in cooking and as an after dinner aperatif.
queso crema cream cheese
queso cremoso cream cheese
queso de cabra goat cheese
queso de oveja pecorino
queso parmesano parmesan cheese
queso[s] cheese[s] cheese
quince 15, fifteen
quisquillas prawn[s]
rábano[s] radish
rabas rings of squid
rabo tail (oxtail)
rabo de buey oxtail
ración portion
raciones portions
raíz root
rallado grated
rape monkfish
raya ray; skate
realized{o|a}[s] fulfilled, carried out
rebozad{o|a}[s] batter/battered; breaded
rebozar to coat ingredients such as meat, fish, vegetables in flour, egg, and breadcrumbs before frying
receta[s] recipe[s]
recetario[s] recipe book, cookbook
recibo receipt, bill
redondo round (cut of beef)
reducción reduction
referencias references
refresco[s] soft drink[s]; refreshment
régímen diet
rellen{a|o}[s] stuffed; filled
remolacha beet
remolinos swirls
repostería bakery, pastry shop
requesón a fresh cheese that is similar to ricotta or cottage cheese.
reserva[s] reservation[s]
reserved{o|a} reserved
revuelto[s] scrambled egg dish (other ingredients than egg)
ribeiro young white wine from Galicia
ribera riverbank, riverside
rincón corner, nook
riñon[es] kidney[s]
río river
riojan{o|a}[s] of, from, in style of La Rioja
riquísim{o|a}[s] very rich, delicious, very tasty
róbalo sea bass; haddock
roble oak
rodaballo[s] turbot[s]
rodaja[s] slice
roj{a|o}[s] red
rollito roll, as in smooth out pasty dough
romero rosemary
romesco a sauce made of pounded almonds, hazelnuts, garlic, tomato, olive oil typical of Tarragona; a red sauce for seafood from the Catalonian & Basque regions
ron rum
roncal smoky flavored ewe’s milk cheese from Navarra (Spanish Pyrenees) ivory in color, sharp, tangy flavor, is compact (very firm), has a thick rind, milder and smoother than Parmesan
rosa pink
rosad{o|a} róse
rosbif roast beef
rosquilla[s] doughnut
rot{o|a}[s] broken (fried eggs with broken yolk)
rúcula arugula (aka rocket)
rulo roll
rusa Russian
rústic{o|a}[s] rustic
sábado[s] Saturday[s]
sabor[es] flavor[s] (also taste)
sabros{o|a}[s] tasty
sal salt
sala hall, room
salami salami, possibly pepperoni
salazón salting
salchicha[s] sausage[s]
salchichón sausage (cured, not generic for sausage)
salida exit
salmón salmon
salmonete[s] red mullet[s]
salmorejo sometimes a sauce but usually a type of gazpacho thickened with bread made with bread, egg, pepper, tomato, garlic, salt and water, all shredded and beaten until a fine purée is obtained
salsa[s] sauce[s]
saltead{a|o}[s] sautéed, past participle of saltear (to sauté)
salvaje[s] wild
salvia sage
sandía watermelon
sangre blood
sardina[s] sardine[s]
sarro tartar
sartén frying pan
seco[s] dry, dried
segundo plato second course
segundo[s] second[s] (course)
seis six
selección selection
seleccionad{o|a}[s] selected
selvática wild
semana week
semiseco medium dry
sémola semolina
sencill{o|a} simple
sepia cuttlefish
septiembre September
servicio restroom, service
servido served
servilleta napkin
sésamo sesame
sesenta 60, sixty
sesos brains
seta[s] mushroom[s]; wild mushroom[s]
setenta 70, seventy
sidra cider, most likely “hard”; principally made (and consumed) in the communities of Asturias, Cantabria, and the Basque country
sidrería cider bar
siempre usual (aka always)
siete 7, seven
silvestre[s] wild
sirope syrup
soasad{o|a}[s] lightly roasted
sobrasada pork sausage from the Balearic Islands, of a spreading consistency, cured with large amounts of pimenton
socarrat highly valued by connoisseurs of paella, the rice at the center of the pan’s base, which becomes caramelized or lightly burned during cooking
sofrito sauce made of olive oil, onion and paprika, and often garlic, lightly fried
soja soybeans or soy; also possibly soy sauce
solomillo tenderloin, sirloin; fillet
sopa[s] soup[s]
sorpresa surprise
suave soft
suplemento surcharge
surtido assorted, assortment
taberna bar
tabla[s] board (platter or plank); sometimes table
tallarines noodles, roughtly equivalent to tagliatelle
tarrina tub (small container in the shape of inverted truncated cone)
tarta de queso cheesecake
tarta[s] cake
tartaleta[s] tartlet[s]; small cake[s]
taza cup
tea
temperatura temperature
templad{a|o}[s] warm, tempered, lukewarm
temporada season (time of year)
tempranillo (red) the best known quality Red Wine Grape in Spain. It produces fresh and fruit young red wines but it shows its best when oak aged.
tenedor[es] fork[s]
ternera veal (sometimes beef) beef (usually veal)
terraza terrace
terrina terrine
tetilla a cone-shaped cheese with hints of herb and lemon that is soft and creamy
tiempo time
tienda store
tiern{a|o}[s] tender (also young); fresh
tierra[s] land, earth, soil
tigre[s] stuffed mussels; a dish with finely chopped mussels, mixed with onion, pepper, tomato sauce to form a delicious filling; then breaded and lightly fried.
tinta ink
tinto red as modifier of vino
típic{o|a}[s] typical
tipo[s] type[s]
tiras strips
tocinillo de cielo pudding made with egg yolk and syrup
tocino bacon; pork fat
tomate[s] tomato
tomillo thyme
toque[s] touch (as in small amount)
toro bull
torrezno[s] chunk of fried bacon
torrija[s] French toast; bread fritters; sweet pastries
torta cake
torta del casar raw sheep’s milk cheese, is a very creamy cheese, with unique aroma
tortilla Española Spanish thick fried potato omelette
tortilla Francesa plain omelette
tortilla[s] Spanish omelet, traditionally made with potato and onion and served as a tapa or light meal
tortitas pancakes
tortuga turtle
tostad{o|a}[s] toast, toasted
tostas toast
tradición tradition
tradicional[es] traditional, customary
tragòn glutton
trece 13, thirteen
treinta 30, thirty
tres three
trigo wheat
triguero[s] wheat; also wild as a modifier
trocitos chips
tropezones small piece
trozo[s] piece[s]
trucha trout
trufa[s] truffle[s]
trufad{o|a}[s] truffled
tudela a common modifier (of origin) of various ingredients: a municipality in Spain of the autonomous community of Navarre, sited in the Ebro valley.
turcas Turkish
turrón almond nougat candy
txakoli acidic white wine from Basque country, often served with tapas
txistorra long thin sausage sold in coils, of Basque/Navarrese origin (chistorra in Castilian)
txuletón A prime steak from a very old cow, primarily found in Basque Country
ud[s] unit[s] (abbreviation of unidad[es])
único[s] unique; single in context of price
unidad[es] unit[s] (as in number of pieces served)
untados spread
uva[s] grape[s]
uvas pasas raisins  (or just pasas)
vaca cow (therefore beef)
vacuno cattle (therefore beef)
vainilla vanilla
vajilla tableware
vapor steam; steamer
variad{a|o}[s] varied, assorted
variedad[es] variety
vasc{o|a}[s] Basque
vaso[s] glass[es]
vegetal[es] vegetable[s]; in some contexts, vegetarian
vegetarian{o|a}[s] vegetarian[s]
veinte 20, twenty
venado venison
ventanilla counter (window)
ventresca lit: belly, usually tuna
verano summer
verde green
verdejo (white) wines are aromatic (with a tropical character), with body. Some producers opt for oak aging, and the results have been very good.
verdial olive with unusual bright green color, have a very firm flesh, a medium buttery texture, and a crisp, clean fruity taste.
verdura[s] vegetable[s]
verduras de invierno winter vegetable
verduritas vegetables
vieira[s] scallop[s] (typically a Gallego term)
viernes Friday
vinagre[s] vinegar[s], usually a white wine vinegar made of sherry
vinagreta vinaigrette
vino tinto red wine
vino[s] wine
virgen virgin
virgen extra extra virgin
virutas shavings
vísperas eve
vizcaín{o|a}[s] from or related to Bay of Biscay
vuelta y vuelta over easy ; rare (as in how much cooked)
yema de huevo egg yolk
yema[s] yolk[s] (of eggs); buds or shoots (of plant)
yogur yogurt
zamburiña[s] variegated scallops; Pilgrim scallops
zamorano a well cured sheep’s milk cheese from the Castilian province of Zamora, similar in taste to Manchego but with a richer flavor.
zanahoria[s] carrot
zarzuela casserole; seafood stew
zumo[s] juice[s]
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