If you guy’s have been reading my posts around our Spain special, you know that our Spain holiday was more a gastronomic journey than anything else. I mean we don’t hike, we like to go to beaches (but it was winter), we don’t like walking too much, we like to shop (but we didn’t budget any money for it) – so what else are we going to do – we are going to eat.
Over the years, our taste buds and food habits have evolved. From ordering the same old butter chicken and daal makhni, we have graduated to appreciating cuisines all over the world. The definition of non vegetarian food has changed from chicken and fish to, well we have sinned. Sinned a lot, since I moved. See the deal is that chicken here is usually kept among the frozen veggies, so if you say you eat meat – you better be eating some real meat.
Moving on to the Top 5 Foods that you must try in Spain:
a. Paella – Paella is somewhat like Biryani cooked and served in the same plate. It has some exotic flavours to it along with a lot of different type of sea food thrown into the mix. Now this can be bastardised, for travellers and it has been – so now all sorts of Paella’s are available. Like the one with chicken, or some other meat or just the vegetables – but no it’s not too authentic if you don’t see a variety of creepy crawlies in it.
My husband and daughter really loved this dish and we tried it at a couple of places. It was mostly good, at almost all of the places. It’s like ordering dosa in south India, there’s not much to mess up here!
Restaurant recommendation :La Mar Salada at Barcelona by the sea side
b. Tapas dishes – I said this before, but the Spaniards love to eat their food like the Indians. For us there is only one style and that is – family style. So Tapas has a very similar concept, you order a couple of different Tapas dishes and then everyone gets to try everything.
At Llamber (in Barcelona) we tried almost 7 different Tapas dishes (no, no we are not from Somalia), we just skipped a meal and one of the highlights at most of the places is the “Patatas Bravas”. Now this is for the vegetarians, listen up, this is the same fried boiled potatoes that your mom gave you. But the pieces are much bigger and then they add some really fancy sauces to it. They taste amazing, and are a must-try.
Ok so I firmly believe that there are two things in this world, that you cannot go wrong with – one is potatoes and the other one is eggs. They taste delicious, and if they don’t, you’re really a bad cook!
Restaurant recommendation : “Llamber Taberna Gastronómica” in Barcelona
c. Jamon Iberico – Ok I have to confess, I cannot be eating this. But this is a speciality, people put it in their bags and smuggle it back to their countries. You will see these giant legs of jamon hanging at shops and restaurants all over Spain. It is also the perfect souvenir to remember Spain by, I am sorry but am not THAT adventurous yet.
Maybe couple of years, maybe another life. Who knows.
Restaurant recommendation : Every second souvenir shop in Madrid
d. Sangria – Woo Hoo!
I don’t need to explain Sangria to my readers, if I do, probably you are new here. What’s not to love – red wine…good! fruits in alcohol – healthy! They use a variety of wines to prepare it and it is available at every bar and restaurant.
Order the damn pitcher, for crying out loud!
e. Churros con Chocolate – If you’re an American or if you’ve been there you know what Churros are. They are these long sticks which taste sweet and are generally freshly baked. When I told our guide, that I knew what they were and I gave the America reference, she frowned and told me to try them right away.
So in Spain they are different, they look the same but they are not. These are crispier and are supposed to be had with Spanish hot chocolate. Now my relationship with chocolate has been “complicated” for the last 10 years at least, I wasn’t going to say no to this and I am glad that I didn’t.
Restaurant recommendation : Chocalateria San Gines in Madrid
Doing a bonus one, the last one is called the Pimientos de Padron. Now I had this on our last night in Barcelona, and I was not a fan. These are small green peppers fried in olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt. It’s an extremely popular Tapas dish and is usually considered quite healthy and filling at the same time.
Try this one at your own risk.
With this post I conclude my Spain holiday series. I hope you enjoyed the information, reviews and pictures. I sincerely hope this helps you when you plan your own trip to Spain, I relived the whole vacation again and can’t wait to go back in summers.
You know I love hearing back your opinions, comments and recommendations in the comments section.