How to make Torrijas for Holy Week

Mariquilla, my boss’s daughter, came flouncing into my office. “Miss Cat, IIIIIIII need the, um, capirote.”


I asked her what it was, or to describe it, thinking it could be one of the two things in the preschool workroom. A powder blue nazareno robe or a pointed nazareno hat. She indicated the hat and it hit me: We’re already in Holy Week. Seven short days from now, I’ll be wheeling a Virgin Mary throughout the streets of the neighborhood I work in with the kids dressed in mantillas, robes and those KKK image-invoking hats. And in eight, I’ll be heading to Romania for what my friend Bryan has called the fight of vampires versus gypsies.

While visions of marshmallow peeps and drugstore jelly beans dance in my head, I set out to prove to my boyfriend that I’m not a “blue-eyed Homer Simpson” as he recently dubbed me, so I made Spain’s answer to a chocolate bunny: torrijas. Made like French Toast, this honey- and cinnamon-sweetened bread is only eaten in the week leading up to Easter.

One french bread bar (better if from the day before), cut into thick slices
1 cup milk
2 medium-sized eggs
one stick of cinnamon
2 tablespoons flour

In a shallow bowl, pour the milk and add a few shakes of cinnamon, depending on taste. Beat the two eggs in a second shallow bowl and slowly add flour. Dip thick-cut slices of bread into the milk so that they’re saturated, but not dripping, in milk, then pass them to the bowl of eggs, turning over to ensure there’s egg enough to fry.

Heat a good amount of olive oil on the stove top. After it bubbles, it will start to smoke; this means it’s hot and perfect for frying. Place the bread in the oil, being careful not to burn it (usually twice on each side is perfect). When finished, cover in sugar or honey.

Yeah, or just make french toast and call it Typical Spanish (Thanks to Susana, the boss of torrijas, for helping me with the recipe and photo from

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About Cat Gaa

As a beef-loving Chicago girl living amongst pigs, bullfighters, and a whole lotta canis, Cat Gaa writes about expat life in Seville, Spain. When not cavorting with adorable Spanish grandpas or struggling with Spanish prepositions, she works in higher education at an American university in Madrid and freelances with other publications, like Rough Guides and The Spain Scoop.


  1. […] all know that I paso de pasos (and the crowds, and the brass bands and even the torrijas), but the grueling pilgrimage from one’s church to the Cathedral and back fascinates me. No […]

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