středa 15. července 2009

More and more goodies

The day when we arrived in Cambrils was the final day of a series of religous holidays dedicated to San Joan (St. John). This holiday is very popular in Catalonia and celebrations last for several days. During these days people party in the streets, fire fireworks, dance and of course eat eat eat. There was a local produce market in the port of Cambrils set up for the holidays and selling traditional foods and crafts.

This couple is baking traditional bread. They made the dough on the spot and baked the loaves in a traditional stone oven. It tasted heavenly.

There was also a stall selling dozens of varieties of pickled vegetables and olives.

Fuet and cured meat.
We bought a loaf of bread, some olives, some of the cured meat shown above, 1 fuet and lots of wine and had a very pleasant late night snack.

Paella is served in all restaurants. It's not possible to order it for one though, only for 2 people or more. I would love to learn how to cook paella, I'm not good at cooking rice though.

Grilled baby squid

Mussels mariniere

Fried small fish. A perfect snack to go along with beer.

We sat down in a bar serving vermouth and were served 2 tapas like this. It's a pitted olive, anchovy fillet and pickled oyster with some hot sauce. It was salty, sourish, hot and briny at the same time. Vermouth is quite popular in Cambrils and many bars serve it in a peculiar way. There are buckets with ice with a bottle of vermouth and water inside and a bottle of hot sauce on the table. You order vermouth and they bring you big glasses with ice, pieces of orange, olives and a small plastic syringe. If I got it right you should mix yourself a drink with the vermouth and water and use the syringe to pour some hot sauce into the glass. Another interesting thing is that it's not charged by glasses. You are charged by the bottle and by the person. That means that if there are two of you you pay 4,5 euros per person as long as the first bottle lasts and no matter if you drink 1 or 5 glasses. In other words for 2 people a bottle of vermouth costs 9 euros, for 3 people 13,5 euros. If you start another bottle it's 4,5 per every person on the table again. I'm not sure if I got it right though :)

Lobster and seafood combo. The photo is blurred because the photographer's hands were shaking with fear. The people by the table were threatening to eat him if he pursues to hold them back in order to take pictures. Yes, it did look that appetizing and it was divine.

Husband posing as the background of this spectacular looking prawn/calamari "spear". Fried baby octopus are served along with it, it's the plate on the right. We love prawns and found this place to serve the best prawns in terms of price/quality because prawns are really quite expensive in Cambrils. This "spear" costs 21 euros and has 10 very big and juicy prawns, 10 big calamari rings and this plate of freshly deep fried baby octopus. We have had prawns in more expensive places but somehow they weren's that good. These ones were perfect.
Grilled baby octopus.

Hake with prawn and wild mushroom sauce. At first this looked ridiculous to me. A cream sauce with mushrooms on fish on the seaside in summer? But the waiter explained to us that wild mushrooms are very popular in Catalonia, even by the seaside. Apparently lots of mushrooms grow in the surrounding mountains. And indeed I have seen porcini mushrooms being sold on a market later as well as canned wild mushrooms in supermarkets. Surprisingly, Catalan cooks add nuts to almost all cream sauces, I'll have to do some research on this. This dish was fabolous. Hake is considered a somewhat low quality fish in Europe, but it's a favourite in Spain and I can see why now. Here in Prague it's sold in the form of frozen fillets that are full of water and taste very dry and fishy. This freshly caught fish was moist and delicate. Another interesting thing is that no sidedishes or garnishes are served with cream sauces. Nothing to mop up the sauce with, except bread.

Žádné komentáře: