Basic menestra


This is the most traditional way to prepare a menestra. To prevent the sauce from sticking to the bottom of the pan once simmering, just shake the pan.


2 c peas (shelled)
1 c broad beans (shelled)
1 c green beans (ends trimmed, cut)
2 carrot (medium sized, sliced)
1 c artichoke hearts (halved)
2 c cauliflower (florets)
3 egg (hard boiled and shelled)
1⁄2 c ham (optional, roughly chopped)
1 T flour
1⁄2 onion (medium sized, minced)
1 c olive oil
1 t paprika
1⁄2 c wine (optional, white wine)
1 t salt
1⁄2 t pepper
6 asparagus (cooked asparagus spears or from a jar)


  1. Wash, cut or dice all the hard vegetables. Shell the peas and broad beans.
  2. Set the oil in a deep pan over a medium low heat. Add onion and ham, if used, when hot. Fry both gently until the onion is soft and translucent, 5 to 6 minutes.
  3. Add vegetables and cook until the vegetables soften, 10 to 15 minutes. Add paprika and flour. Cook 2 to 3 minutes more.
  4. Add the wine, stirring softly to mix well. Cover with water, lower the heat and simmer 30 to 40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
  5. Season, add the asparagus; simmer for 5 minutes more.
  6. Transfer to a warm serving dish, garnish with hard boil eggs quartered, and serve.


  • Remember, ham or bacon can be used; just sauté before the onion. Two slices of Serrano cut into stripes add a nice touch. Another nice touch is garnishing with hard boiled egg quarters.
  • Make it speed cooking by using frozen cut green beans and artichoke hearts, baby carrots (cut them in half for faster cooking) and frozen peas. It is OK to use a mix of frozen and fresh vegetables.

This is the recipe most Spaniards will use when cooking a menestra at home.

6 servings
Preparation time
Cooking time
Total time
45 minutes