Even after 13 years, I still find it strange to say I live in Ibiza. I have little interest in the clubs for which the island is renowned, so I instead embarked on a culinary exploration – a search that revealed a rich culture stemming from a long history of farming and fishing.
While many memorable meals here have involved fish, the dish that resonates with me most is meat-based, and one I imagine few visitors have sampled. Sofrit pagès is a tasty stew typically made with lamb and chicken, potatoes and two varieties of sausage. Sobrasada is cured in the manner of chorizo, though with a looser texture, and butifarra is a type of blood sausage akin to black pudding. These are usually made during the matanza, the traditional pig slaughter practised in late autumn by generations of farming families as a means of providing a year-round supply of food.
The dish was reserved for special occasions – a gastronomic labour of love
As with many classic dishes, the recipe for sofrit pagès was a result of what was to hand. Potatoes were plentiful, meat could be sourced from one of the many farms, and saffron had been brought to the island by the Moors many centuries prior…