If I had gone to Rome for a month you wouldn’t have to guess what kind of food I have been eating. And if I had done a month in Japan it wouldn’t take a rocket scientist to deduce what kind of food I had been eating. However, I am in Spain and that may lead you to wonder what the heck I have been eating and drinking over here. When we were in Madrid the hotel had a continental breakfast. This included a very crusty roll, one pat of butter, one serving of jam, and some ham and cheese to put on the roll. We were offered coffee and orange juice and there was a selection of cereal with room temperature milk. I ate the roll with the butter and jam and skipped the ham and cheese. I also declined to try the cereal and milk. I like cereal with cold milk. With my host family the first day I was offered for breakfast hot cocoa with cookies and a sweet bread that comes prepackaged. I can’t really describe it except that it is almost like the texture of a Twinkie without a cream filling. I can’t remember what I said that had my host mom not serve so much sugar in the morning but recently I have been getting with my daily hot cocoa, a piece of what we would call French bread, and a very thin slice of cured ham. It is darker in color than the pale ham Americans eat on sandwiches. I come every day for lunch after school to a hot lunch. What a nice treat! Today we had rice with a few chunks of meat and a few green beans and peppers. Paella de carne. For the second course we had a thin piece of sauteed chicken breast with a really light coating of very fine bread crumbs. We had pork the other day in a similar manner with the pork sauteed with thin slices of garlic. I had french fries with two fried eggs on top yesterday for lunch. Both of my host parents went out on Sunday but my host mom left me a plate of hard boiled eggs stuffed with tuna and mayonnaise topped with the yolk crumbled through a fine mesh strainer. I have also had a fish empanada, which is basically a fish poptart, really. A thin pastry crust stuffed with fish. My mom bought that but has made a chorizo and cheese stuffed empanada from scratch. My first day for lunch we had garbanzo beans with a few vegetables. I don’t mean to sound like it wasn’t delicious I just don’t remember the exactly what else was in it. I have had many dinners ,but my memory is clouded with the chorizo empanada which has been my favorite dish so far.
I have been enjoying the many different types of cured pork products available here in Spain. Spain is sort of known for its wine. What I mean is that people know that wine is produced in Spain. France is known for its wine and Italy is starting to become less confusing but for many people, Spain’s wine classification system and the fact that Spanish wines have not been marketed as aggressively as Italian wines, Santa Margherita I’m talking about you, Spain is a dark hole of winely obfuscation. But I’m in Asturias, and Asturias is known for its Sidra. Sidra is an alcoholic beverage made from apples with a taste of apple cider vinegar. At least I’m guessing it tastes like apple cider vinegar because I’ve never tasted the stuff straight. There is a street in Oviedo filled with restaurants that serve sidra, and on any block all over the city you can find a restaurant with the sign Sidreria over it proudly announcing their Asturian heritage.