San Sebastián Week 2 and Tortilla Española
YES I can blog again! I'm sorry it has taken so long but we still dont have wireless internet hooked up! Wow I have a lot to say its almost overwhelming, but bare with me. Brittany, Lexie and I have spent several hours sitting at an outdoor bar crowding our three laptops onto a tiny table to use their wi-fi (or "wee-fee" as they say it). These first two weeks in San Sebastián have been incredible. I am already in love with our apartment even though I feel like it was decorated by a ninety year old cat lady. It has three bedrooms, a bathroom, a tiny kitchen and tiny living room, but its home :) Since moving into our little flat I have learned SO much more about the city. The above photo is the view from our living room window. I continue to be charmed by the number of people sitting at the bars below us each and every day for their afternoon sangria or glass of wine.
Naturally, I've done a significant amount of food investigation since I've been here. Tapas, or pinxtos (peen-chos) in basque, are by far the main dining option in San Sebastián and all over Spain. Pinxtos are small bites that are sold cold at the bar of a restaurante or ordered warm from the kitchen. Originally, the pinxtos tradition was invented to keep people from getting drunk as they hopped from bar to bar throughout the night. Now, San Sebastián is known for its delicious bars and restaurants that offer the small savory dishes.
Among the seemingly endless amount of bars and restaurants there is a surprising number of Turkish "Doner" Kebab places. We discovered these kebobs early on and have since compared them to a New York hot dog stand because of their presence on every other street corner. These aren´t the same kebabs that we are used to back home (see Chili Chicken Mango Kebabs). These kebobs are different and they´re awesome. The chicken is topped with lettuce, a spicy red sauce, and creamy white yogurt sauce that makes it sloppy to eat but well worth the mess and pile of napkins. However, I took a peek into the kitchen of one of the kebab places only to discover that the chicken is shaved from a large mass of chicken parts somehow glued together and spinning vertically on a spit. Questionable. But delicious nonetheless. My recommendation to anyone who visits Spain would be to try the kebab, but forego watching them prepare it.
Another popular dessert item around here is called Dulce de Membrillo which is literally a brick of quince jelly. Quince is a fruit that is basically hybrid between an apple and a pear. Dulce de Membrillo is sticky, dark orange in color and as you can see, does not look especially appetizing. The texture is like a combination of apple sauce and Jell-O, the taste can be described as such as well. If you´ve ever eaten those fruit leather snacks as a kid, you get the gist.