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Archive for the ‘
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Spain’ Category

Calçots

Monday, March 14th, 2011

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Calçots are a variety of green onions that are unique to Catalonia. They have an extra long white part which is cultivated by re-covering the onion with soil every time it peaks out of the ground. These overgrown scallions are harvested at the end of winter into the early spring and are only eaten at this time of the year. We are lucky to be in Barcelona in prime Calçots season, and so my friend Adria takes us to Can Cargolet, a great steak and snail restaurant, where they serve this speciality. The calçots are charred over a grill and served with a special red sauce comprised of tomatoes, almonds, olive oil, vinegar and garlic. Adria demonstrates how this is eaten: remove the charred skin in with one gentle pull, dip in the sauce and drop the whole white section into your mouth. The flavor is indescribably good. The inside gets steamed and soft and melts in your mouth with the delicious sauce. It is truly an exciting food experience. Enjoy the demonstration video and check this link to get your own calçots (not sure if they deliver international).

Classic Barcelona

Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

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I don’t drink very much coffee (gives me the jitters), but when I am in Barcelona,  (pronounced: “barthelona”), I must have a cortado. This perfect coffee drink seems to be completely overlooked by my coffee obsessed homeland, but everyone here drinks it. Not sure if you can tell from the picture above, but this drink is just a little bigger than a shot. I don’t know the exact formula but I think it is one part espresso and one part steamed milk with a little bit of foam on top. I can’t describe the perfection. Alongside the cortado, I order a tortilla espana. This is an egg, potato and onion pie with no crust. All the cafes and tapas bars have a tortilla sitting around, and when you order a piece, they nuke it up and pour olive on top like maple syrup to your pancakes. Its often served with pan con tomate, which is sliced bread fresh tomato and olive smeared on. You cannot visit this wonderful city without experiencing these two simple delights. (This meal was eaten at O’ Vall D’ouro–don’t have the address yet).