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Spain- Landscape in a cooking pot

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Joined: 03 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:00 am    Post subject: Spain- Landscape in a cooking pot Reply with quote

“A country cuisine is its landscape in a cooking pot” said the Catalan writer Josep Pla (1897-1981).
A glance inside that cooking pot unmasks more than just the country’s geography. You must savour the entire culture to understand the complex culinary traditions that is Spain.

The north of Spain is part of Asturias “Green Spain” along with the Basque country, Cantabria, and Garlicia. The culture of allowing sheep to roam still prevails there and produces over 30 recorded varieties of cheese, as well as a large selection of fish and seafood from the Atlantic, which is served up as simply as possible.

The Pyrenees, that forms a natural border between France and Spain. Catalonia and the Basque country are the only two territories extending on both sides of the mountain range. Anyone in search of fresh fish will find the freshest of catches in infinite range and variety from gurnard, brown sea scorpions and gambas (shrimp).
A multitude of different types of sausage, Pyrenean cheese, mountains of fruit and vegetables. Chefs from Spain’s best restaurants often trawl this paradise for the produce required to create such a varied cuisine. If you can’t go to Basque and sample this wonderful cuisine book a table at Basque Tapas and Wine in Melbourne, Australia.

The eastern region, there are two types of Valencia’s cuisine: on the hot fertile coastal plain the orchards and vegetable gardens are an inexhaustible source for simple and light delicacies. Meat plays a secondary role here, as fish and seafood dominate. Rice, which the Valencians prepare imaginatively, is an integral part of the local cuisine. No dish has achieved such fame as the paella, which is well known far beyond Spain’s borders.

Puerta del Sol is the centre of Spain and the culinary culture of Madrid is somewhat simple and robust but refined and aristocratic and is now recognised as world class cuisine. Castilla-La Mancha is harsh region lying in the heart of Spain; the plain is sometimes scorched drought and burning sunshine. This sparsely inhabited area still produces excellent roast lamb. The Shepard’s share the land with farmers and supply each other with splendid white bread to accompany cheese and meat, with light, crisp wines, and vegetables which are transformed into a fragrant wonder in the clay pot.

To even begin to scape the surface of such diversity in Spanish cuisine would take a lifetime of culinary delights, one thing is for sure, food in Spain is fresh, abundant and full of taste and the Spanish love their food dearly.
View video of Spanish cuisine at

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