There it is. I’ve set the wheels into motion and it’s now being recorded in cyberspace for anyone interested in reading it. A new challenge that I have decided to take on: launching a travel/food blog. The Red Spoon Diaries: Culinary escapades with a wandering foodie. I have been toying with creating a blog that combines two of my favourite things; travel and anything related to food. Whether I am at my local market, grocery store or across the globe, there are culinary adventures all around us. I have actually found that the most difficult way to cook is with the fewest ingredients. I always want to add instead of edit. Is that because there are just too many possibilities? Probably.
I recently returned from a trip to Spain where they are famous for their sangria, tapas and paella. There are, of course many more worthy things that Spain is known for but this time I will be exploring the food. When I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to travel to another country, I like to do so without an itinerary. I don’t like to be with a group, on someone else’s schedule, and told what I have to do and how much time I have to do it. If I want to linger somewhere and take photos, I want to be able to exhaust every angle and take as many as I want and not have to rush because my time is limited. Part of my idea of a wonderful vacation is renting an apartment and having my own kitchen to play in.
Don’t get me wrong. I will explore the city that I’m visiting until my feet are so sore that I’ll have to get a pass on one of their Hop-on-Hop-off buses, but I need to be able to have a working kitchen so that I can take advantage of their markets, food shops and grocery stores. A plate of cheese, meats, bread and olives with a glass or two of wine suites me just as well as a multi-course meal at the finest restaurant. I don’t care if it’s simple food or a complex recipe. It’s all about experiencing the food, playing with new kitchen gadgets and soaking in as much of a culture as possible.
Spain did not disappoint. The tapas were amazing, the paellas delicious, the markets tantalizing and the sangria intoxicating. Europeans really know how to take the time to savour life. We were never rushed from our table at the restaurants because it was expected that patrons should linger and not hurry through their meal. Sangria is a wonderful beverage to enjoy on a patio, but it has a way of sneaking up on you the longer you sip at it, even if you are eating a bit of food with it. But then, isn’t that all part of the holiday experience? Don’t we always overindulge when we go on vacation? Of course we do because we know that when we get back to the reality of our regular lives, we’ll be back on schedule… eventually…
Our apartment had a huge terrace that was almost the same size as the interior. It opened off of the kitchen and I couldn’t believe our luck that there was a trumpet player who would play jazz almost every night we were there. When I closed my eyes, I felt like I was at a jazz bar. Candles on the table, the clinking of plates and glasses, the murmuring voices of other people talking and laughing all added to the ambiance as we enjoyed our meal at the end of the day. It was here where I began to create the outline of the Red Spoon Diaries.
Come with me as I explore Barcelona’s culinary offerings.