Churros con chocolate is a popular
breakfast meal. Churros are deep fried sticks of dough and the
chocolate is so thick that one can stand a spoon in it. It is
delicious but you can almost hear your arteries hardening.
Botin One of our favourite restaurants was El Sobrino de Botin
in Madrid, reputed to be the oldest restaurant in the world.
A meal in the cellar, the oldest part of
the building, is a great way to celebrate a
To help pass the time on
an eight hour train journey between Madrid Chamartin and Santiago de
Compostela (the train was an hour late)
we had a degustation of cheese. We also purchased the last bottles of
white wine from the bar car.
Nata cantabria (cow): soft cheese with a good
bite. Roncari (sheep): open
texture, bite of a good aged cheddar, good after taste. Idiazabal (sheep): open
texture, almost smoked, medium strong.
Mahon Semi (cow): soft firm
texture, good medium flavour. Manchego de mi pueblo
(sheep): good texture but a little mild.
In Santiago de Compostela this mild cheese
with a wax covering, known as a tetilla, was very popular. It is shaped in
the form of
a woman's breast as an ancient protest at the church authorities who
ordered that the breasts in a statue of a woman in the cathedral be
made less prominent. With a bottle of Alvarino it was excellent.
In the market at Barcelona we found a
strong Manchego (sheep) as well as an Afuega'l Pitu (cow) cheese.
The latter looked dried up from the outside but it had a firm although
soft consistency with an excellent flavour. The Manchego was sweet
which was balanced by the slightly sour flavour of the Agfuega'l
Aguega'l Pitu is Asturian for "sets fire to your gullet".
Not as bad as it looks
but not a favourite
Festival of Sant Joan
Barcelona many people buy these sweet breads which are decorated with
crystallized fruit and sometimes with a cream filling.