A Culinary Journey through Spain

We love indulging in local food on our travels and are constantly looking for scrumptious eats in our city. We recently attended the Truck by Truckwest festival in Austin and wrote an article on Our Top 10 Food Trucks this Year. As a thank you, Boca Food Truck invited us to their ‘El Camino’ Wine Dinner to celebrate their pilgrimage to Camino de Santiago. The Camino de Santiago is a world-famous pilgrimage stretching across Europe and ends at the tomb of St. James in Santiago de Compostela in north-west Spain. Kudos to Patrick and Clayton on completing this 500 mile pilgrimage and what better way to celebrate than a four course dinner inspired by their time in Spain.

We absolutely love Spanish food and culture and were thrilled by the invitation. The dinner at Boca was a culinary déjà vu for our senses. From the first course to the last, each bite took us back to Spain. All the memories came rushing back and we wanted to catch the next flight out to Barcelona. But, for now we want to take you on a journey through some of our fondest food memories in Spain.

Food tour in Barcelona 

The first course took us back to our first night in Spain. A food tour in Barcelona was a great way to start our travels through the country. We spent the night exploring local shops and restaurants tucked away on the cobblestone streets of the Gothic quarter. It was a memorable night of sampling wines, tapas, cheeses, jamon, foie gras, fresh anchovies and other local delicacies. We recommend Barcelona Food Tour  with Kaye for a fun and delicious evening in the city.

BOCA Camino DinnerThe first course – baguette with olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette, olives, baby Manchego cheese, Jamon Serrano and Spanish tortilla.

The best Spanish Tortilla in San Sebastián

The Spanish tortilla took us to back to San Sebastián – a foodie’s paradise. The city is located in northern basque region of Spain and has more Michelin star chefs per capita than any other city in the world. We found this cozy tapas bar called Bar Nestor which made the best Spanish tortilla. The chef makes one giant tray of this warm gooey egg and potato dish twice a day and it’s devoured in less than 10 minutes. Locals started pouring in around 1 pm and suddenly there was no place to stand. This was definitely the best Spanish tortilla we had in Spain and Boca brought back those fond memories. If you love food, a visit to San Sebastián is a must!

Food tour barcelonaSampling delicious tapas at a local butcher shop in Barcelona and indulging in some hot Spanish tortilla in San Sebastián.

Seafood at Barcelona Markets

The second item was a seafood course – steamed mussels’ in a white wine lemon broth. This dish transported us to the markets of Barcelona. Mercado de La Boqueria is located in the heart of the tourist district of La Rambla and is the best place to satisfy your seafood craving. The market is a feast for the senses and the seafood restaurants there are very popular. Most of them are really tiny and can seat only a handful of people. The food is prepared right in front of you and served at the bar. It’s chaotic and can be challenging to find a seat. The trick is to make eye contact with the server behind the bar and signal that your waiting for a seat. He will then make a mental note and let you know when it’s your turn. It’s how the locals do it, observe and follow the protocol.

Barcelona markets Grilled calamari, razor clams and prawns…so delish!!

Paella in Valencia and Granada

The third course was chicken with chorizo sofrito, rice and fried duck egg. This hearty and flavorful rice dish reminded us of Paella. Paella is popular across Spain but most places serve sub par versions for tourists. The coastal city of Valencia where the dish originated is best known for its paella. There are many variations of paella – a traditional Valencian paella consists of rice, chicken, rabbit, land snails, green beans, and beans, with a few vegetables and is prepared in a big pan on an open fire. Other popular options include seafood paella, mix paella and a black paella called arroz negro made with squid ink.

PaellaChicken with chorizo sofrito, rice and fried duck egg at Boca.

GranadaEnjoying a seafood paella at La Parrala paella bar in Granada.

 Street food and local bakeries across Spain

To end on a sweet note we had a Tarta De Santiago, a traditional almond cake from northern Spain served with a rosemary lemon tea. Although the cake was good and the tea comforting, we were really craving some hot churros. Fried doughy goodness dusted with sugar and served with a cup of thick hot chocolate (for dipping) is perfect Spanish comfort food for a cold night. We gorged on churros in Spain and didn’t miss an opportunity to buy some whenever we spotted a xurreria or bakery. This is the best street food in Spain and it’s so darn good! Try the Xurreria in Barri Gotic in Barcelona, crispy sugary deliciousness!

Craving ChurrosMy nemesis – the desert course. 30 minutes more at the gym tomorrow.

Churros in SpainEnjoying churros and hot chocolate. Word is, the best are found in Madrid!

Muchas Gracias to Boca for bringing back so many fond memories of our trip to Spain with their delicious food. We can’t wait to be back for more Spanish fare, amazing dinners and celebrations.

Boca food truckBoca food truck is located at South Austin Social trailer park in Austin Texas. Contact Boca at Bocafoodtruck@gmail.com to participate in their delicious wine dinners and special events.

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