Two typical Spanish dishes are on the menu of the Oscars ceremony

by Lorraine Williamson

J.A. Bayona’s films La Sociedad de la Nieve and Pablo Berger’s Robot Dreams won’t be the only Spanish touch at the 96th Oscars gala on Sunday, March 10 in Los Angeles.

Paella and Iberian ham will serve as Spain’s worthy representatives at the Governors Ball, the party after the Oscars. There, more than 1,600 guests will enjoy a menu prepared by Austrian-born chef Wolfgang Puck. “This year we have a lot of inspiration from all countries. But we love Spain and we love Real Madrid. They certainly have the best ham and the paella is very famous”, Puck told Spanish news service EFE.

Spanish twist on the menu at the Oscars

Puck’s team of 120 chefs and cooks will prepare more than 60 dishes and desserts on March 10 for celebrities, their attendants, industry insiders and the press who will attend the gathering on the terrace of the Dolby Theatre (Los Angeles, USA) after the winners of the evening are announced.

“We worked in Girona for a while and we had the chance to bring a lot of culinary ideas from all over the country. So, we wanted to show some of that here,” said Byron Puck who is the son of the legendary chef who has been cooking for the Hollywood stars at the festival for 30 years.

The menu consists of many different dishes from different countries. Of these, according to the 74-year-old chef, the chicken pie with black truffles, fried macaroni and cheese or smoked salmon stood out in previous editions.

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But the Cinco Jotas 100% Iberian ham – from pigs fed on acorns – has also become “one of the favourites”. Especially for Puck, who ordered 10 pieces of ham on this occasion to meet the demand of the people.

“As long as we have a good master carver, we will have Iberian ham,” Puck said.

This is the second time the Spanish delicacy of Cinco Jotas will be given a place at the award ceremony. But it’s the first time it’s been presented as a standalone dish and not part of a recipe. That was the case in 2019.

“This is a very important event that you prepare for with great enthusiasm and throughout the year. We all know that Spanish gastronomy is spectacular. And this edition will surely triumph,” Raúl Garrido, the Cinco Jotas master carver, told EFE. In addition to the bellota ham, paella is also on the menu.

Two Spanish films nominated

Gastronomy is not the only area in which Spain will stand out, as during the award ceremony, Spain will also shine in other areas. First of all, thanks to Juan Antonio Bayona’s film La Sociedad de la Nieve. It has been nominated for Best International Film and Best Make-up and Hairstyling. Robot Dreams has been nominated for the Oscar for Best Animated Feature.

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