Souperchefannatravels Take Me To Spain
Hola! This series documents my travels and the inspirations and the stories behind the creation of the healthy innovative soup souperinspirations for TssTakeMeToSpain campaign.
Indeed, I feel very blessed to be able to travel to many parts of the world and experience the different cultures and foods. As it has been commonly cited, the way to the heart is said to be the stomach but the heart may find far more than food, appealing to emotions and the mind too. I have wanted to visit Spain for the longest time, and do a series on my journeys in Spain. Today, Spanish foods is gaining popularity worldwide and also in Singapore, thanks to the masterchefs who have put Spain on the gastronomy map. For some reason, Spanish soups though integral in the Spanish food culture and truly a centre stage for many home cooked comfort meals with recipes passed down through generations, it is often an after thought and never a souperstar in restaurants. With our travels, we aim to bring this very soul from Spain to our kitchen to your table. This is the start of a series of blog posts documenting our travels across Spain in search for inspirations for these healthy comfort soups.
I have fallen in love with Spain and have left a part of me with her. What is there not to love? The beautiful mountains of the Pyrenees, the picturesque coastline of the Bay of Biscay, exciting cities such as Barcelona full of amazing architecture by the one and only Antoni Gaudi and most importantly the lovely people, the rugged flavours of Spanish foods and the blessings of great weather.
I am not attempting to give a history lesson, that we can ask Google, but I do feel necessary to dwell a little into how Spain became what it is today, the multi faceted influences from the many people who came, conquered or settled in these lands in the course of history leaving their mark. As a gateway from North Africa to the Mediterranean, Spain was where the passage of foods can be traced. The Greeks and the Romans introduced the Mediterranean trilogy of bread, wine and olive oil. Then came the Moors-Arabs from North Africa that introduced citrus fruits, rice, sugar cane and spices from the India. With the discovery of the Americas by Columbus in the 1400s, tomatoes, beans, potatoes, peppers and exotic chocolate were integrated into Spanish cuisine and adopted as its own.
Before this trip, I admit that my knowledge of Spain’s cuisine was limited to El Bulli, molecular gastronomy hub, paella, gazpacho, Iberico jamon and Sangria. How ignorant I was! A country with 17 regions, all faithful to their traditions, just visiting 4 regions, I am only scratching her surface. But for now, that will be have be.
We spent 15 days travelling through Spain. Landing in Barcelona, we headed towards:
Basque country :San Sebastian (2), Bilbao(3), experiencing pintxos
Castile: Burgos (4), learning about The Way of St.James and eating Morcillas de Burgos (Burgos most famous blood sausages)
Aragon : Huesca (1), Zaragoza (5), cooking healthy comfort Spanish inspired meals
Sant Sadurni d’Anoia, cava capital of the world
Corca, L’escala, Figueres, Girona (7) where we stayed with great people at Casa Matilda, learning tips on Catalan cooking
French Perpignan (8), eating crepes and buckwheat galettes
Andorra (9), the towering Pyrenees and snow for the kids
With 2 young kids in tow, we took our time driving and exploring these regions, made pit stops at places to eat including having lunch at Can Roca (owned by the father of the famous Rocas brothers), levitate outside the Guggenheim Museum, did the pintxos crawl and snowball fighting in the Pyrenees. We were privileged to stay at some of the places that we can cook, hence there are a series of recipes developed which are my versions and interpretation of some of the Spanish dishes that I have savoured. I am souper stoked to be able to share the Spanish soups souperinspirations developed from our travels.
From Spain with love, to our kitchen to you! Buen Provecho!
Muchos gracias! Thank you for giving me the opportunity to explore and tell her story! Let the journey begin!