Holm Oak Wood from Spain
Holm Oak wood
This is the tree that grows the acorns, that feeds the elusive black-footed (pata negra) pigs, that become Jamón ibérico.
The (Quercus Ilex) Holm Oak tree is hard, dense and aromatic, much lauded for it long burn characteristic and authentic use in wood fired oven cooking. It’s harvested as part of an ongoing programme of coppicing and pollarding of the managed woodlands in the regions, where the focus is on acorn production. Trees are not felled solely for wood as in the normal harvesting way, this occurs only if they’re beyond their productive use.
Many of the trees are up to 400 years old, and grow mostly in dry-stone walled enclosed pastures, which cattle and other beasts use to graze. The atmosphere is idyllic and you can feel the weight of tradition and history when you visit the areas.
To give a scale of just how vast an area this production covers, then if you’ve been to Richmond Park in Surrey, and imagine driving through that for a solid 4+ hours, looking side to side, forwards as far as the eye can see ahead, then this is close to the scope of what’s growing there. In Spain this wood and the smell of suckling pig hangs often in the air of Segovia, the ancient city in Castile and León.
You can capture some of this experience in food here at Brat in Redchurch Street, Founded by Chef Patron Tomos Parry, who’s Welsh sensibility is inspired by the love of cooking of Turbot over coals, in the Basque region town of Getaria, Northern Spain.
Take time to go to the upstairs to and see the open grills, the charcoal fired stove and a wood oven. It’s simply, quietly and beautifully inspired.
We now stock the Holm Oak wood in 12 kg boxes and 25 kg bags.
Contact the team for further information.