We've been talking a bit lately about how the Catalans LOVE food. LOVE food.
Today was a great example.
We had the good luck to be invited down to lunch on a boat with a whole bunch of other folks we know....all wonderful. Lunch started in theory at 2....for a variety of reasons we all arrived at around 1:30...no problemo, out came the pica pica, which is nibbles basically, beer, something else (coke this time) chips, olives, sliced meats, yadda yadda yadda....we brought wasabi peas...they met with mixed results, some delight, some spitting.
Lunch itself formally arrived at around 3:00. We started with an empanada, which is like a flat dough pie. Home made, of course. This had tuna, veg, boiled eggs and I know not what else inside and was gorgeous.
Then came the grilled veg: taters, mushrooms, eggplant and zuccini....
Then came the meat (this is now the third course after an HOUR of chips and nibbles. There was: chicken, rabbit, ribs, morro (pig snout) sausages, shishkabab (how DO you spell that), pork loin, wings, and something else or 2 that is escaping me, all in giant mounds. We ate about half to two thirds and there were 10+ hungry people there so you can imagine the quantities! This was accompanied by 7 litres of Basque cider (the hard stuff). The stern was about a foot undwater once we all got aboard.
Then we went onto a flan, bread-pan sized, homemade...and delicious, everyone but me and the minors had it with orojo (spelling is wrong) which is some kind of distilled liquer made from the left-over grapes from wine pressing, which our host had altered by putting coffee beans into a half-full bottle of the stuff. This was warmly received. They thought the bean idea wonderful, though I think folks do know about this.
I would like to point out that almost all of this, with the exception of the empanada, was made by two guys on a 31 foot boat. You have to LOVE food to make so much so well with such limited resources...
Then a homemade cake, which was delicious.....several folks put some rum on this. I would like to point out that there were some people who weren't drinking at quite the same level, as they would have to be driving, but the other thing to remember is the LENGTH of this lunch....
Then coffee, or one of about 16 types of tea. (No decaf and I bailed on the tea..two worst cups in my life were made by Catalans, it makes me a little wary)
By now it is closing in on 6, and a couple of the guys are wanting mojitos. Now I don't know about you, but not many people in this day and age are willing to go to the kind of effort that they all did. The owner of the boat had a mint plant, two of the women started picking leaves, the mortar and pestle came out and mint leaves were pounded with brown sugar for ages to make a paste, meanwhile someone else took a bag of ice onto the dock and used a bottle to crush it, this was put into the glasses, then mint/brown sugar mixture was dosed with rum to liquify it more and make it easier to share out into the glasses.....
and we were gone.
I figure that most people didn't even think of leaving till 8pm, and there are probably still a few folks there now.
I think I'll still be full tomorrow.