spain

el pedroso: newest trail

  • spain
Spain, España, Andalucía, El Pedroso, hiking, trail

Even easier than the Mirador de Alonso, this walking route is so new that it doesn’t have an official name yet! Still under construction on the day after Thanksgiving, we were surprised at all the animals we saw along the way: falcons, storks, sheep, friendly dogs & curious cattle… an easy way to connect with nature if you happen to be in the area.

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recipe: migas

recipe, Spain, migas

And you thought gazpacho was the only way Spaniards found another use for day-old bread! Much of Spanish cooking is waste not-want not using simple, high quality ingredients. In fact, migas (literally “breadcrumbs”) uses only five common kitchen staples to make a classic dish. This particular recipe comes from a family of saffron harvesters in Castilla-La Mancha, so they add a pinch of their local spice. For this traditional shepherd’s dish, saffron wouldn’t normally be on hand but its addition makes this version even more tasty.

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personal: places lived 13

places lived, Spain, El Pedroso, 2021 to present, España

When I wrote this series of posts last year, I never dreamed another entry would be needed so soon! Such is life. A friend & I began house hunting online during the height of the pandemic, mainly as a way to pass time. Without trying, we learned a lot about the real estate market in Spain. So when our landlady decided not to renew our lease for 2021, I put all that research to work & became a first-time property owner.

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spain: utrera

  • spain
Spain, España, Andalucía, Utrera

A quick commuter train ride southeast of Sevilla —the line heads toward the general direction of Zahara de la Sierra & Grazalema— ending in Utrera. This city of 52,000 people sits off most tourists’ radar but has a few surprises to merit a visit: a church similar to the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos in Lisbon, the only church bell ringers left in Andalucía, an immense castle keep & a party room inspired by the Alhambra. Even pastries if you have a super sweet tooth! Let’s explore this easy day trip from Sevilla

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andalucía: navigating a pandemic

  • spain
España, Spain, Andalucía, COVID19, graph, pandemic

In March 2020, Spain began a lockdown that would come & go for well over a year. As we descend from the fourth wave of infection, now seems a good time to reflect on national & local management of the pandemic. My personal experience in Andalucía should not be considered standard for the entire country; other regions of Spain have had wildly different circumstances. Hindsight is of course 20/20, but I’ll try to address the good, the bad & the unfortunate, occasional ugly. Enjoy the rollercoaster ride like the graph above (taken from the Ministerio de Sanidad).

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sevilla: almohad baths, rediscovered

España, Andalucía, Sevilla, Bar Giralda, Almohad, baths, baños árabes

I’ll wager that almost everyone who visits Sevilla has walked past the Cervecería Bar Giralda on Mateos Gago. Beginning as a kiosk in 1923 on nearby Plaza Virgen de los Reyes, owners moved to this more permanent spot when architect Vicente Traver renovated a pre-existing structure. Regionalist style was all the rage in 1920s Sevilla, so Traver incorporated what he found into his design then left no written record of his work. Archaeologists would uncover this gem one hundred years later…

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recipe: lentejas

recipe, Spain, lentejas

A big bowl of lentil stew makes any winter day warm & cozy… delicious even while temps in Sevilla reach 23ºC in mid-February! Every Spaniard grows up with their family’s version of this classic dish, & Rafa finally let me have a go at making this crowdpleaser. Lots of spices along with onions, carrots & potatoes give fantastic flavor to a basic kitchen staple: the lentil. One taste & this may become your favorite stew regardless of the season.

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