Eating the Spanish way

For Spaniards, food is an excuse to connect, to bond with other people and to celebrate life.

These pictures are of an impromptu lunch I had with some of my favorite people in Madrid, Spain back in September 2015.

In Spain, any meeting becomes an excuse to share a meal. And its easy to put together -no trips to a far away supermarket needed. Madrid is full of mom and pop fruit vendors, bakeries, "chacinerias" and liquor stores... Most everything is organic and free of MSG and GMOs. Heaven!

Once decided on the menu, we went to the downstairs fruit vendor and got some amazing tomatoes, endives and seasonal fruits...

...then crossed the street to the "chacinería" for different types of incredible cheeses and Jamón Ibérico.

... walked another half-block to the neighborhood bakery and got a fresh-out-of-the-oven French Baguette... Is there anything in the world better than fresh bread and good cheese?

The Ventresca we used for the salad came from Galicia -my friend’s hometown. Her cousin dive fishes and keeps them well supplied with fresh seafood (the envy!!!).

Did I say there was nothing better than good bread and cheese? I had forgotten Spanish wine! One of the wines, Arbil 2008, was from Burgos (Arlanza D.O.) -produced by a friend's family vineyard. The other, a Sardon del Duero Abadia Retuerta 2007 brought back from a trip to Rioja.

My favorite thing about Spain, right after my husband, is how they eat! Food must be of good quality and abundant and, most importantly, it has to be fresh, organic and made with primary ingredients.

I used to think their 2-3 hour lunches, even on weekdays (!), were insane. Now I understand that time is necessary to keep the ritual and feed the culture of living life in the moment. Viva España! Olé, Olé y Olé!

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