Thursday, March 17, 2016

It's Always About the Food

The food has been amazing! And so cheap! Usually when you travel, food is expensive. Heck, food is expensive at home. I've been saying lately that Nashville thinks it's New York when it comes to restaurant prices. Well, not in Barcelona. We have been so surprised. It's also helped that the Euro to the dollar is almost even now---a dollar is worth .90 Euro which means it's a $1.10.

Anyway, here's my take on some food related issues.
This is our private tour guide Jordie. He's been with us all week. In this photo, he was showing us an orange leaf. Remember I said that it was illegal for the locals to take the oranges? Well, because many ignored that law, Jodie said that the government started planting  "sour" oranges. You can tell the difference by the leaves. He is showing the leaf here of a sour orange--it has a littler leaf at the edge.
We went though the largest fresh market in Spain. It was so fascinating. Butch even bought a coconut juice for 1 euro. Actually, Stephanie had bought it first. Butch thought she was crazy---that it would be coconut milk---from the inside of the coconut. We don't know what this is, but it was sooo good!! We're going back to the market on Friday and I'm getting another. Steph is going to try something different. That's not my style when I know I'm only going to have it once more. I'll stick with what I know I already like and will not be able to get again!
As we were strolling through the narrow, old byways, we came upon this shop. Jordie treated us to "chocolate and churros." You cannot drink the chocolate---it's so thick. You dip the churros in it. He said that's a common breakfast here. We saw it advertised everywhere. He said his mother made it all the time for him and his siblings. This is a little twist by adding the whipped cream. What's not to love---fried dough and chocolate! Not exactly the healthiest of breakfasts, but certainly a treat. All five of us could not finish one chocolate---it was so rich.
After our tour with Jordie ended, he suggested this place for lunch. I was all over it! I love a restaurant with a tablecloth and fresh flowers. This one was on one of the squares. It's called 15 Nits and was a French restaurant. There was music from the street entertainers too. Anyway, there are many places like this. They offer a fixed menu for basically $11.00 per person. You get an appetizer (I got some sort of noodle with squid and other fish---so delicious---enough to be my entire lunch), an entree---I got veal in some sort of sauce:
This would have been good, but it was far too rare for my taste. I think I had two bites. The bread was enough anyway.
Butch got the trout which he said was delicious. He offered to trade with me---he's so good like that. But I was already satisfied.
There was a choice of desserts but we all picked the cream filled crepes. In addition, the $11.00 included wine and bottled water. We're not talking "run of the mill" food either---as you can see! There was another place next to this one with a seafood menu. We're going to try that one tomorrow.

Today, we went to another place on a little plaza where the fixed menu was $12.00 a person---same servings. Pretty unbelievable. AND---if you eat inside, it's even cheaper---$9.00 per person. We wanted to be outside on this beautiful day, so we opted to spend the extra. Totally worth it.

After lunch, we strolled back through the market. I was fascinated by this fruit. I've never seen anything like it. It's such a beautiful pink. I'm thinking I might have to try it---or at least the juice.

There were so many unusual things in the market---fish of every type and shape. The meat---OMGosh! I've never seen anything like it. Jordi told us that they eat every part of the animal---and it's for sale here. I can't even post the pictures because they are so gross looking. When he says they eat everything---that's exactly what you see for sale---EVERYTHING!! I'm in no way a picky eater---and I consider myself pretty adventuresome when it comes to eating. The only way I could eat some of these things is if I had no idea what it was. Some things look exactly like what they are. In that case, it would have to be covered up in some sort of sauce thus to make it unrecognizable. This is not in any way a criticism, just a little freaked out.
The bread! I could live on it and be perfectly happy. The prices are incredible too! A yard long baguette is about 70 cents! All shapes and sizes. We picked up meat, cheese and bread to have a picnic for dinner after our big lunch. We love to do that when we travel. We were supposed to also have olives and grapes, but somehow didn't get those.
That brings us to yesterday. We took our guide's advice and headed to the "non-touristy" part of the city. We just browsed around all the little shops and plazas. I stopped and bought some olives at one of the smaller markets. I should have asked for another bag. I felt a little foolish walking around like this. Nicky helped me eat them---so good!

Okay, enough about the food. I'm just sayin' I could come back here just to eat! Butch is being a really good sport too---considering one big meal can last him 3 days. I think it's because the restaurants are so reasonable. In fact, the entire trip has been very reasonable---we highly recommend it.

Today we head out-of-town to a winery and monastery. We won't be back until 6 p.m. Our vacation is going by way too fast! Only one day left.
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2 comments:

  1. Sounds like a fun trip - that food and sunshine both look good.

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  2. Oh food is one fabulous way to enjoy the places of your travels, it sounds like Barcelona is a winner on that count.

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