Callos Madrilenos: Madrid-Style Tripe

Madrid tripe
Erinborrini/Flickr/CC BY 2.0
  • 3 hrs 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 3 hrs 30 mins
  • Yield: 6 Servings
Ratings (44)

Beef tripe, which is the lining of beef stomach, is called "callos" in Spanish. It is a very traditional dish in Madrid and has been served in taverns and on family dining tables for centuries. It is a hearty meal perfect for cold winter days.

Like all traditional dishes, there are many variations. This recipe includes serrano ham and morcilla (Spanish blood sausage), while others might use ox cheek and a splash of white wine. It also has the option of adding garbanzo beans; though not traditional in this tripe dish, the beans thicken the broth a bit.

You can find beef tripe at most markets. There are three kinds of tripe--honeycomb (the most tender), pocket tripe (less tender) and plain or smooth tripe (the least tender). If you can, buy the honeycomb tripe. This recipe also features calf or pig foot--when purchasing, make sure it is cut in half. The local butcher can cut it in seconds with his sharp tools

What You'll Need

How to Make It

  1. Clean the tripe under cold running water. Set in a bowl of cold water and vinegar for a few minutes, then rinse thoroughly. Cut into pieces approximately 3-inches square.
  2. Coarsely chop 1 onion. Take the head of garlic and peel each clove. 
  3. In a large heavy bottom frying pan or pot, place tripe and calf's/pig's foot. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Allow to boil for 1 minute. Pour off all water and froth or scum that formed.
  1. Add water to cover tripe and calf's foot in same pan. Put chopped onion and all but 3 peeled cloves of garlic, bay leaves and peppercorns in pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer for 3 hours.
  2. Finely chop the remaining onion and garlic. Cut the serrano ham into small squares. Slice the chorizo sausage into rounds.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a skillet and sauté onion, garlic, ham and chorizo for 5 minutes, or until onions are translucent. Remove from heat and stir in the paprika. Add the mixture to the tripe.
  4. Cut the morcilla into rounds and place in the pot. If using garbanzo beans, add them now and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. The traditional way to serve callos is in earthenware bowls, accompanied by rustic bread.