80-year-old Spanish 'Grandmother of Churros' shares secrets to her success

The Great Big Story profile on Charo Salguero Venegason 80-year-old Charo Salguero Venegas, fondly known as "Grandmother of Churros," is a real treat. She's a living legend from the small town of El Puerto de Santa María, Spain, recognized by the mayor for her exceptional churros. Charo's churreria isn't just a business—it's her life and her legacy. She even buys special flour, made for her, which she says is her "secret."

Her recipe goes back generations, but Charo has perfected it over the past seven decades. And now, she's passing all her churros-making wisdom onto her son Alonso and grandchildren.

Watching Charo's story took me back to my trip to Spain, where I first encountered this different kind of churro. Before this, my churro experience was limited to the cinnamon-sugar coated Mexican style common in the States. But in Madrid, I tasted "churros con chocolate"—a whole new delight. In Madrid, Spanish churros come unsweetened and fresh from the fryer with a thick hot chocolate dip. Madrid's churrerías are more like dessert "bars," serving up fresh churros on demand into the wee hours of the night.