A lot of people ask me when I will make a map of Europe according to Spain. The answer is complicated, partly because I actually live in Spain. It’s not that I’m afraid somebody will set my flat on fire or beat me up in the local pub, it’s just that the closer you examine a country, the more difficult it is to simplify things.
Another reason is that Spain is not something particularly coherent, it’s more like a cause than a real country. Trying to fit all its nuances in a single frame gives me a headache. However, there is one thing I can totally gossip about without feeling confused and that’s food. Spanish food is an amazing amalgam of some wonderful and some less enchanting things. My all time favorite – Spanish tortilla. It’s pure culinary poetry: simple, juicy, filling and delicious. The second one is chistorra. The third one – tortilla with chistorras (pictured above).
But there are some disappointments too and apart from seafood, which I absolutely hate regardless of origin, they are mainly in the confectionery department. According to my observation, the Spanish are a little bit addicted to sugar. For a start, I still have a problem finding simple soda water that isn’t sweetened. I was a little bit cautious in my generalization until yesterday when I found a really reliable source to confirm my suspicions. Mikel Lopez Iturriaga, a culinary blogger, wrote a rather harsh article titled ¿Por qué los cruasanes españoles son tan malos? basically blaming Spanish bakers for ruining the croissant by not following proper recipes and drowning it in sticky sugar coatings. Here’s a summary of the article in English.
It’s all true and also a little bit sad for people like me who enjoy having a simple croissant with simple soda water.