Tortas de Aceite

So after finally making it to the new Longo’s down at Maple Leaf Square, Greg and I are wandering through the place, filling our cart with many, many thing we don’t need. (Seriously, biggest one-stop grocery bill ever!) Anyway, added to the cart full of things we don’t need but want, is a package of Spanish torta de aceite. I have no idea what they are, but they come in a Seville orange flavour. That’s enough incentive for me. And since I’m being a greedy girl and buying many things I want but don’t need, into the cart they go, even though they’re eight bucks for what look like 8 individually-wrapped 5-inch crackers.

The torta come in a variety of savoury flavours; olive oil, sesame seed, anise, and one sweet variety, Seville orange, sprinkled with sugar and the dough studded with bits of Seville orange peel. The package says they are to be eaten with cheese.

When I get them home and unwrap one, it’s like a cross between a flatbread and a cracker, like the maker couldn’t quite decide – there are obvious air bubbles, so they’re made with yeast, but the result is crisp. The tops are lightly sprinkled with sugar and bits of orange are obvious.

Greg finds them unexciting and not worth the $8. Me, I am addicted. They’re crisp, they’re light. They’re not too sweet.

Here’s what I can find about Torta de Aceite, made by Ines Rosales of Spain since 1910. The tortas are handmade in Seville (you can book a tour of the factory). They are a traditional Andalusian confectionery, traditionally made with almonds and anise. They are considered a healthy biscuit because they are made with olive oil instead of animal fat.

Further exploration online indicates that they’re pretty easy to make and are a staple in most Spanish homes, particularly in and around Seville.

Obviously, I will be trying my hand at making them. I’ve been meaning to get into making my own crackers for a while now, but haven’t had the time to do it. The out of the way trip and $8 price tag for this brand is more than enough incentive to get me rolling my own tortas. Because, as I mentioned, I’m pretty darn addicted to the things.