Still with the aftertaste of Christmas and already thinking about the entroido (Galician carnival): that’s life. This year, it runs from 8 to 14 February. Soon the whole of Galicia will be immersed in the world of the cigarróns, the boteiros, the peliqueiros, the damas e galáns, the xenerais da Ulla, the choqueiros… And for that you need energy, you have to eat well with the products of the land and the most traditional recipes at this time of year. Eating at these gastronomic festivals is a way to connect with the essence of Galicia, and to have a great time!
Feira do Butelo da Fonsagrada (3 and 4 February). The weekend before the entroido is a perfect time to stock up on food for the month’s stews and savour the first butelos (a dish of meat-stuffed pork intestine), if you haven’t already done so at the Festa do Botelo do Barco de Valdeorras, on 20 January, of course. Whether with an “o” or a “u”, from Ourense or Lugo, this wonderful sausage is a delight. In A Fonsagrada, in such high mountains, at more than 900 m, the butelo, smoked with oak wood, is cured in a unique way, becoming the “king of the mountain”. The festival, now in its 27th year, is not all about butelo, of course. In the marquees, open from 10:00 to 20:00, there are also sausages, ham, honey, wine, cheese, bread… And live music and traditional dances. On Sunday 4th, in addition, the Butelo de Ouro is awarded at the Casa Consistorial.
Festa de San Blas de Bembrive (3 February). What is said to be the best pilgrimage of the winter in the Rías Baixas is famous for the furanchos, places in private homes or small wineries that sell surplus wine from the harvest, accompanied by good local tapas. Up to 23 are part of the map of furanchos of San Blas 2024. From the 12th of January there are already musical performances, including the II Serán popular, in the Palco Vello. On Sunday the 3rd is the solemn mass and the procession, and the celebrations end with a concert by the Ateneo Musical de Bembrive. After so much revelry, it’s a good idea to pray to the saint of aphonia… By the way, to make things easier, this year there is a car park in Espedrás street.
Feira do Cocido de Lalín (4 February). This cocido (Galician stew) fair is a real queen of festivals, now in its LVI edition, and it is also a Festival of International Tourist Interest. It is an event with an awards gala including gastronomic journalism and Galician gastronomy, broadcast live on TVG, with first-class musical performances (Vicco, Nil Moliner, Rozalén…). There will also be sporting activities (Divercocido, Motorcocido, Carreira do cocido), ethnographic activities (traditional pig slaughter), musical performances and… of course, excellent stews from Lalín! It is already known that, “de San Amaro a San Valentín, mes do cocido en Lalín”. (from Saint Amaro’s Day to Saint Valentine’s Day, cocido month in Lalín”).
Festa do Caldo de Ósos de Taboada (10 and 11 February). It has always been a tradition in the area to prepare this caldo de ósos (pok bone broth) on the second day of the slaughter. In the 32nd edition of the Festa de Ósos de Taboada, we can taste it during the entroido weekend in the restaurants of Taboada and, on Sunday, free of charge, in the Riazón Square. But we are not going to spend the whole day eating broth, we will have to do more things. Of course, the festival is not only about eating, during the whole weekend there will also be performances, exhibitions, stalls with pork products, wines and cheeses, … and lots of music. So, what bones are in the broth? Well, bones from the soá of the pig, that is, from the backbone. The broth also contains potatoes, chickpeas, sofrito, pig’s brains, and the patience of the slow fire, which tastes so good.
Festa do Cabrito de Vilariño de Conso (10 February). On the Saturday of entroido we have this appointment in one of the places with more carnival roots. This is the land of the boteiros, the fulións and the fuliadas, but it is also a land of high mountains and a lot of goats. In this XXXV edition, the tradition continues. The Guerra bakery, in the town centre, will once again be in charge of roasting more than 100 kids. They will be accompanied by empanada, scalded chorizo, traditional cakes, coffee and liqueurs. Tickets are on sale between 1 and 3 February.
Festa da Filloa de Lestedo (18 February). The filloa (Galician traditional crepe) is one of the protagonists of the feasts during the entroido. Although the big day of the Lestedo festival, which this year is in its XLI edition, is Sunday 18th, the festival gets underway on Saturday 10th with the Festa da Filloíña, dedicated to children; followed on Wednesday by the Filloa Cooking and, on Saturday, the Filloa Folk Festival. On Sunday, from 8 a.m. onwards, the spectacular filloeira machines will be working non-stop. There will be music, tastings, culinary demonstrations (by the way, this year the town crier is Javier Olleros, from Culler de Pau)… And, of course, the festival will be attended on horseback by the authentic xenerales da Ulla, the traditional characters of the entroido of the area.