Today, I have decided to talk about one of my favourite topics, food.
I won´t lie though, I am a picky eater. I know what I like to eat and how, and I am not always willing to try new things, “don´t fix it if it ain´t broke” and all that…
However, since my move here, that has changed radically. Most of this change is not my decision, but rather, due to peer pressure; my friends or colleagues telling me I “have to try it” or a simple “man up and eat it” from Fiona.
If like me, you are a picky eater but are considering becoming more adventurous, I have two pieces of advice.
- Do it! Your taste buds will thank you
- Start small
Tapas. Tapas are a well known type of appetizer/snack associated with Spanish cuisine. They are a great way to experience new foods in a clever way (hey, if you don´t like it, it probably only cost you 2€ anyways..). Eating tapas also means you can try many different varieties of foods, for a small price.
When we first arrived here, Doug and Inge took us out for tapas. We went to “El Asador” in the centre of El Puerto. When we walked in, the first shock we got was the fact that everyone who was eating tapas was doing so at the bar. Some were sitting on bar stools, but the majority of folk were standing, while talking, eating and laughing. This “standing up while eating” concept felt completely bizarre me.
The second, and far more frightening shock I got, was Doug announcing he had ordered bull´s tail (yes, you read that correctly) and pig´s cheek for us to try. At first I thought he was joking, and I looked at Inge and Fiona for a laugh but didn´t get one. When I realized he was serious, I really did need a bar stool to sit down on.
Doug and Inge let us start off gently with the first round of tapas including; a piece of manchego cheese (a well-developed cheese from La Mancha in Spain), “patatas bravas” (small chunks of potatoes served warm with a spicy tomato sauce), a mini peppered steak, (succulent meat served with a large helping of pepper sauce) and some green olives. They were delicious, with the peppered steak being the tastiest, in my opinion.
Too soon, those tapas were demolished and the rest of our food arrived. I was surprised to see both of the bull´s tail and the pig´s cheek looked quite appetizing, if only I didn´t know what they were…
After some serious “you only live once”, “just try it” “it’s not going to kill you”, I relented (I feared I would be sent back to Ireland if I didn´t…joke!).
The bull´s tail was served with crisps in a delicious sauce and the pig´s cheek was tender and moist, quite possibly the most delicious pork I have ever tasted.
In the end, I survived to tell the tale (excuse the pun!), and I would even go as far as to say, I highly recommend you try all of the foods mentioned above!
All this talk about food has made me hungry..that’s all for now…!