Sunday, February 3, 2008


Look what we had for lunch today...

We visited a couple of local museums, and on the way back we went to our local 7/11.

It isn't much like the ones at home. The Man got a bottle of Jerez sherry for six Euros. and we debated what else to get. There were several frontrunners: the sepia with peas, the favas in sauce, the roasted rabbit, snails in sofreigit...but in the end we got these...

Those were snails cooked with olive oil and garlic, and we got a little pot of aiolli to dip them in. Aiolli, if you don't know, is garlic and olive oil pounded together until if forms an emulsion. Sort of like unbelievably delicious garlicy mayo...

Then we had these....

These are stuffed squids. Oh my they were good.

Then we started cooking our calçots.

We have a little fireplace in the kitchen, so we started up the coals. You are supposed to cook calçots over a hot flaming fire of olive wood. Hmmm. We went with coals which provided a nice even heat, then fed it continuously with paper while the outside of the calçots burned.

I could only cook six or so at a time so I had to work in they were completed we wrapped them in newspaper so they could steam and soften a bit more.

You eat them with a romesco sauce for calçots, which our neighbour had also made. Oh my goodness, it was delicious.

If you want to read more about this delicious tradition, click here for the last calçotada we went on, a much more greedy and authentic affair, complete with an olive wood fire, which we gathered ourselves.

As a surreal ending to the day, there was a commotion in the street, and like all good nosy folks, I went out on the balcony to see what was up. A guy and a woman were picking up large garbage from next to the bins on our street. That was the noise, then when I looked closely I realised that the guy was sporting a shotgun, or rifle, whatever. He was also blocking the road, so that when our neighbours appeared he started moving his truck around...nearly hitting the neighbour. Armed bumper cars for goodness sakes. No one seemed the least bit phased by the weaponry.

My question is this: Had he brought the gun with him, and if so why, or was it in the garbage, and if so, who on earth would put it there, and why?

All this is going on to the repeated soundtrack of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, a gift to Youngest which I am beginning to regret.

Off to paint.

Lets do the time warp again!!!!


elPadawan said...

Did I give you food cravings with my latest blog post? :)

It's funny, about snails, in France it's cooked with butter and parsley and garlic. Well, I suppose Olive oil is the standard in spain ;).

You sure seem to have had quite a few pleasant meals.

Anonymous said...

You are sure getting your fill of culinary delicacies. It is neat to try different foods.

We went to The Creperie last night for dinner with another couple. Who knew that crepes cost so much....but it was tasty.

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness - did you quickly back off into your apartment and go sit in the kitchen?
I guess I've been watching too many rotten detective movies or reading too many stupid crime novels at airports waiting for my flights.
But I sure know I wouldn't stick around on a balcony to find out why guys going through dumpsters are sporting shotguns or rifles or whatever.

Beth said...

Your little local store is definitely not like the 7/11s around here.
And that was a mite scary about the shotgun totin' dude so close to home!

Anonymous said...

Looks like a very interesting meal. Do the calcots taste like leeks or even oniony at all? Assuming that, it looks like they would taste great cooked that way. Scary about the heavy artillery out in your neighbourhood.

Jocelyn said...

Just a jump to the left. And then a step to the right.

Wow, you take me there with you.

The food is amazing; I can't believe what a different world I'm living in!

Lynda said...

mmmm snails, squid and onions... that really is a Rocky horror Show menu! I like the idea of steaming the calcots wrapped in newspaper...interesting.

Glad you like my blog.. thanks for commenting, it helps to know that at least SOMEONE is reading it! LOL

hulagirlatheart said...

Oooh, Oooh, I love the Time Warp. Tucked away in my closet is a Magenta costume that hasn't seen the light of day in years. Perhaps, I should get it out. The food looks interesting. One of these days I'll post the directions for the friend potatoes.

hulagirlatheart said...

Make that fried potatoes.

Theresa said...

Calçots, mmmm. I had those once and I loved them. Did you wear the paper bibs that go with the whole thing?

oreneta said...

Elpadawan, the French, bless you all, are of the unknown secrets is that the Catalans are also all foodies. All of them. I love it. And yes, you gave me wicked food cravings thankyouverymuch.

Sirdar, I love love love crepes...though Elpadawan up there eats them with nutella...Eeeewwww. Even if he is French.

GM, honestly, it was so casual and everyone else was so unalarmed...also this is a village, and a lot of the men go hunting...a generation ago almost all of them went hunting every weekend (whether they caught anything is another issue) so there seems to be a lack of social weight around guns that we carry in NA, they are just tools, like a shovel...sometimes.

Beth, I like my 7-11 better, and it wasn't scary so much as freaky...

Dawn, they taste more leekish than onionish, but not very strongly. Honestly they are a vessel for the sauce, they would also be one of the first vegetables up in spring which adds to the delight in eating them.

Jocelyn, it is astonishing how different peoples lives can be and still so much the same. We have the same problems, just our own ways of solving them. As I listen to that sound track I sometimes wonder about the fact that my nine year old has it almost memorised...but it's better than a long shot.

Lynda, do you have a stat counter? You have a great was a very real sort of menu... I made my first paella that evening too!

Hulagirl, you are absolutely OBLIGED to get out the magenta costume AND post a pic...whether you are wearing it at the time or not is another issue...

Please, post the friendly fried potato recipe whenever you get a chance...

Theresa, naw, no paper bibs, we're too tough fot that. Actually we only had twelve so we flew without a chute...only once???? Why???? Can you buy them there?