A Taste of Spain: Favorite Food from My Travels

There are so many things I love about traveling, but for me the best part is trying new food!  After years of traveling, here are three of my favorite dishes.

Spain is hands down my favorite country from all of my travels. I first traveled to Spain in 2004 for a summer study abroad program. I immediately fell in love with the beautiful landscape, people and the cuisine. One day I hope to retire with the hubby in San Sebastian.

Although I fell in love with Spain during my study abroad trip, I didn’t really embrace all of the great cuisine at my disposal. At the time I was a very picky eater, and I didn’t take a lot of risks or try new things.  But, one dish I did eat a lot of was paella.

Paella

paella

Paella is a dish that originated from Valencia, a region on the eastern coast of Spain. Traditional paella is served hot and usually consists of rice, vegetables, chicken or rabbit (this is typical in Valencia).  Other variations include seafood paella or mixed paella.

During my first trip to Spain I only ate paella with chicken. But by the time I returned to Spain in 2012 with my husband, I tried nearly all of the different variations.

If you want to try paella but can’t fly to Spain, try some of these easy paella recipes on Pinterest.

Tapas

tapas

Food Journeys_ Spain. Pintxos 2In my opinion, no trip to Spain is complete without partaking in tapas. Tapas are light snacks or finger foods served at bars throughout the day.  Tapas can be as simple as an olive on a toothpick or an elaborate concoction of seafood, cheese, meat or anything in between.  Depending on where you are, tapas can either come complimentary with drinks or can be ordered for a small fee.

My favorite place to eat tapas or pinxtos/pinchos (the name used in northern Spain) is in San Sebastian.  The bars place all of the tapas on the counter and you can choose whichever pinxtos suit your fancy. It is seriously like foodie heaven. We literally spent an entire day eating pinxtos during our trip in 2012.

Flan

flan

I can’t pass up a good dessert, especially if it’s flan. Flan is a custard dessert that is typically topped with melted caramel. There’s nothing like ending your day with a nice flan and a cerveza. What makes this dessert awesome is that although it can be rich in taste, it is light and fluffy.

 

Traveling has been a great way to experience other cultures and traditions. Trying local cuisine during my travels has allowed me to immerse myself in the culture and has enriched my experiences abroad.  I can’t wait until my next trip to Spain so I can try cocido madrileño (a chickpea based stew from Madrid) and croquettes.

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