In our country, two typical and traditional desserts stand out. One of them we can enjoy all year, while the other is exclusive of the Christmas holidays. We speak to you, indeed, of the Mantecados and the polvorones .
It tends to be habitual that both sweets are confused, because of their more or less similar appearance. However, we are faced with sweets with different ingredients, which can be enjoyed at certain times of the year.
The polvorón: a typical Christmas dessert
Surely if we ask you about a typical Christmas candy , in addition to nougat or marzipan, one of those who first come to mind are the polvorones .
As it happened centuries ago with the 12 New Year's Eve grapes, the appearance of the polvorón in the 16th century was due to a surplus in Andalusia of both wheat and lard (it is believed that in Antequera and Estepa, one of the localities to today most important in the production of mantecados and polvorones).
It is a sweet that is consumed exclusively at Christmas. It is made with flour, lard, sugar and almonds. It crumbles into dust when eaten, thanks to its consistency is somewhat less. It is traditionally wrapped in paper, and so that it does not fall apart when opened it is common to crush it previously. Its shape is usually round.
If you want to enjoy polvorones at Christmas with recipes to make them at home, you can read more in our homemade recipe of polvorones or opt for the gluten free polvorones ideal for coeliacs.
The shortbread: ideal all year round
Unlike the polvorones , the Mantecados They are a sweet that can be consumed all year round in many Spanish regions, especially as a dessert after a meal, or even at breakfast.
Its ingredients are somewhat different from polvorón, since in it we do not find almonds and yes egg white, which acts as a binder, thus preventing it from crumbling like polvorón. It also has wheat flour, pork fat and sugar.
Not only in its ingredients and consistency do we find palpable differences with polvorón. Also in their form: they are usually square.