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Inner courtyard of the Nazrid palace

Inner courtyard of the Nazrid palace

The intricate architectural style of Islam reached its zenith in Granada, where we stayed our next 3 nights. This interesting city has, apart from a modern nondescript high rise modern district and a lovely 15th century Renaissance area, also 2 UNESCO World Heritage Sites from an older era: the 7th century Moorish old town (Albaicín) and the palace complex (Alhambra). In fact, the Albaicín area had been populated since 800 BC by the Iberians, then the Romans and later also a large Jewish community.

"Carmenses" houses of the Albacín

“Carmenses” houses of the Albacín


The Alhambra is a palace city: ringed by a wall of over 2 km with 30 towers, it encloses several palaces, a fort, carefully clipped topiary gardens, orchards of pomegranate, tiered vegetable gardens and numerous fountains. It was the royal residence of the Nasrid sultans from Morocco, built between the 13th and 14th centuries. The network of water channels built in that time to water the extensive gardens and supply water to the countless fountains are still being used today. After 500 years of residence, the last family of the long lineage of sultans only left in 1931!
Gardens in the Nazrid Palace

Gardens in the Nazrid Palace

The Granada Parador Hotel

The Granada Parador Hotel

The aim for our trip was to stay in as varied accommodations as we could, and this time we’re staying for 3 nights on the grounds of the Alhambra (the Granada Parador Hotel), in what used to be a 13th century Moorish Palace which later became a Franciscan monastery. The constant sound of water from the various fountains and pebbled water channels, and the lingering scents of Jasmine, Cyprus and pungent herbs surrounding us were simply magical. All the streets and lanes have been painstakingly laid out with different coloured pebbles in lovely
Tea and herb market in the Albacin

Tea and herb market in the Albacin

patterns, not just in the Alhambra but also in the whole Albaicín! We strolled around the little lanes in the Albaicín, taking many photographs of the typical houses: unlike other “pueblos blancos”, these traditional “cármenes”, are charming stand-alone multi-level white houses with a small vineyard or orchard in the sizeable front walled garden. In one of the squares we came across a tea and spice market where we bought some interesting teas with herb mixes.

The Albaicín has a strong Moorish character even today, with wonderful cosy North African restaurants to choose from. We went for tea at two different places, where my partner tucked into tasting platters of various pastries. He had for instance a date tart, which could be veganized: thin crust of wholemeal spelt flour, add date paste, chopped walnuts, some corn starch, pinch baking powder, good dash of cinnamon, coarsely grated apple and stir a blend of almond cream and almond butter through, then baked to perfection. A popular Arabic pastry here is called “Alajú”: almond, walnut and honey paste (I’d use date or dried pear paste). Another great idea sourcing inspiration from the local ingredients and traditions is to use filo pastry, brush with walnut oil and fill with chopped dark chocolate and grilled eggplant as a sweet, healthy snack.

Avocado amuse bouche

Avocado amuse bouche

The Parador in Granada had such a fantastic list of vegan dishes, that I simply had to have most of our dinners and some lunches there. For lunches I’d have one of their cold soups, such as gazpacho cold tomato (served with various condiments and thus actually a sizeable meal by itself) or “Ajo Blanco”, the chilled almond soup (served with tiny dried fig and walnut marbles.

Broad beans stew

Broad beans stew


We also enjoyed three dinners at our hotel: one night I’d have the Amuse Buche of melon balls in avocado, thinly sliced cucumber rolls and green olives; followed by the main course of broad beans stewed with leeks.

Wheat berries and tofu dinner

Wheat berries and tofu dinner

The second night I had a mushroom starter followed by a delicious vegan stack of slow-cooked wheat berries, grilled tofu steaks and served with wasabi-mustard sauce. Utterly divine!
Grilled vegetables with truffle and lavender

Grilled vegetables with truffle and lavender

The last night I had an exquisitely presented plate of grilled Mediterranean vegetable-timbale, basil reduction on one side and tomato reduction of the other side, and served with truffle and lavender. There were no fewer than 3 vegan desserts to choose from! The last night I had their soy agar-set cream caramel, raspberry purée, chocolate sauce, fruit kebab and ingeniously sprinkled with corn flakes. I nearly licked the plate!

Vegan dessert of soy cream caramel

Vegan dessert of soy cream caramel

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After our almost surreal English experience in Gibraltar, we drove up into the dry, stony mountains covered with cork oak forests, pine copses and carob tree stands. High up in the folds of the mountains lie the “pueblos blancos” (villages of white-washed houses) that look like spilled sugar. We rented a small upright house with loads of stairs, in the pretty hamlet of Gaucín. Blue Cape plumbago, bright pink bougainvillaea and deep green ivy soften the all-whiteness, and steep lanes laid out in blue slate meander in all directions. The little streets that were originally built for the use of donkeys, were nail-bitingly narrow for our car. An organic shop in the small town is called Pura Vida.

Gaucín village and its castle ruins

Gaucín village and its castle ruins


We used Guacín as a base to explore the area: Ronda, an impossibly pretty town linked by an impressive arched bridge across a deep gorge, it has many fine noble houses with beautifully tiled courtyards. We went to see a modern flamenco dance with hauntingly beautiful Andalusian singing.
Cobbled lanes in Ronda

Cobbled lanes in Ronda

Capucino café, Marbella

Capucino café, Marbella

Marbella, a chic seaside resort town with kilometres of paved beachside walk lined with swanky shops, cute cafés and tall palm trees was quite a favourite and we went there twice. We had our morning snack at Cappuccino’s – a stunning location overlooking the beach. Their hummus, raw vegetable crudités and home-made Lebanese flatbreads and freshly pressed carrot juice were a taste sensation! (In fact, I’d repeated that exact same order at their other branch in Valencia later.)

Lunch on Plaza de los Naranjos

Lunch on Plaza de los Naranjos

For lunch we headed to the old town of Marbella to a café on the Plaza de los Naranjos (Orange Square), where I had delicious Gazpacho soup and crudités with olives. We then strolled around the boutique shops. There were shops selling beautiful hand-crafted
Gazpacho

Gazpacho

items, shops selling only various olive oils and, of course, a fantastic chocolate shop with a good choice of dark, vegan chocolates.

Walking back to the beach for a swim, we happened upon a Loving Hut – this is one of the best ones in that chain I’ve come across: small buffet lunch of interesting dishes and not the usual heavy offerings of starchy vegetables and various beans. Even though I was already so satisfied from all the unexpected vegan food I savoured during the day, I bought my usual half dozen of kombucha fermented tea to take home, then lovingly enjoyed spoon after spoon of vegan chocolate ice-cream with chocoolate sauce and toasted hazelnuts AND bought carrot cake to take home (which was superlative).

Vegan soy chocolate ice-cream, Loving Hutt

Vegan soy chocolate ice-cream, Loving Hutt

Cycle path near Gaucín

Cycle path near Gaucín

Always on the look-out for interesting cycle paths, we found one near Gaucín: there were a number of tunnels to go through all beautifully lit (and providing welcome shade and coolness from the hot weather).

It was so peaceful to return to our villa in Guacín and listen to the evening sounds of crickets and neighing donkeys as we sit down at our swimming pool enjoying our vegan dinner. I made us one evening a slow-cooked dish of mung beans, leeks, mushrooms in mole poblano sauce (hazelnut butter, cacao, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, soy sauce).

Mole Poblano dinner

Mole Poblano dinner

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The short 1 hour drive from Seville to our next town took us past sunflower fields and eggplant farms. We saw a flock of storks circling in the air of what must have been over a thousand birds. The coast here is called “Costa de la Luz” – the coast of light. We’ve become so accustomed to narrow streets, that we arrived very relaxed in Jerez de la Frontera: we did not even have to bend the side mirrors in. Mudéjars were Muslims who stayed back in Christian territories after the Reconquest of Spain (“reconquista”) to apply their artistic and architectural skills on buildings etc. The “frontera” in town names in the area refer to when the settlement was once a border between Christian and Moorish kingdoms. The Moors ruled the Jerez until 1264.

My breakfast of figs, cherries, own muesli, almond cultured milk

My breakfast of figs, cherries, own muesli, almond cultured milk

Our apartment turned out to be a very modern, all-in-white spacious conversion right in the pedestrian zone. The large kitchen was an extra bonus and joy for this ardent foodie!

White horse Small squares are dotted throughout the old town – a particularly lovely one was shaded by mature Jacaranda trees. The town is well-known for its sherry industry as well as horsemanship. The Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art (“Real Escuela Andaluza de Arte Ecueste” on Avenida Duque de Abrantes 11407) is a riding school comparable to the world-famous Spanish Riding School in Vienna. We managed to get front rows seats in the arena (a wooden building) for the equestrian show showcasing the skills of both rider and horse. It was spellbinding! The horses were put through their complicated foot work (such as the Spanish walk), classical dressage and choreography, their feet in exact rhythm to the piped classical Spanish music being played.

The afternoon after the horse riding performance

Lovely apartments in Cadiz

Lovely apartments in Cadiz

we drove to Cadiz: the motorway was built over an immense salt marshland. I could see hundreds of flamingoes in the shallow water. The entire old town of Cadiz is pedestrianized, consisting of a maze of confusing narrow cobbled lanes. The town lays claims to be Europe’s oldest city. The Phoenicians established the town of Gadir (walled city) in 1100 BC; Cadiz was also briefly Spain’s capital in 1812 when the constitution was drafted there. Our exploring took us to the gardens where we marvelled at the ambitiously clipped forms and shapes of large topiaries. Back in the narrow lanes, I came upon a lovely shop selling kitchen stuff where I bought baking pans, unusual chocolate moulds and lime green smaller items I couldn’t resist! We only came back to Jerez after 11 o’clock that evening.
Topiary gardens

Topiary gardens

For afternoon tea at a bakery the next day in Jerez de la Frontera my partner had “Pignoli” balls, which apparently had only 2 ingredients: pine nuts and egg white. It’s probably easier to make a raw vegan version of these by using soaked and dehydrated pine nuts, mixed into a bowl with gelled ground white chia seeds and white grape juice, rolled into small balls then dehydrated until crispy on the outside and still chewy on the inside. Another dessert speciality of the area, is called “Tocino de cielo” tartlets. They are made and set with lots of egg yolks and sugar. I’m toying with the idea of using mango pulp set with agar-agar, and then a clear layer of agar-agar on top to give a glossy appearance. A popular sauce – in fact, a raw vegan one – one finds on the menus is called “Salmorejo“. I often made this vibrantly red sauce for us with the Tribest blender I travel with.

Jerez de Frontera is the first town on our journey that was less pretty, with a slight feeling of depression. Indeed, I read that this town had been hardest hit in the whole of Spain with the economic crisis, having the largest debt. We encountered the most beggars and dilapidated buildings. The town is also home to the largest Spanish Gypsy community in the country, so this is a good place to go and see flamenco shows. On our cycle ride we saw a number of mule-driven carts on the roads transporting produce (in fact large parts of Jerez and its countryside reminded us of India) – full marks for using ecological transport though!

Cycle path in Jerez de la Fronterra

Cycle path in Jerez de la Fronterra

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Casas y Palacios Hotel

Casas y Palacios Hotel

Arriving in Seville was again the same story: squeezing the car through streets in the old Jewish quarter so narrow we had to turn the side mirrors in. I was barely able to slide my hand between the car’s sides and the walls. I had visions of us getting stuck with the added awkward situation that we couldn’t even open the car doors! Luckily our hotel had valet parking: apparently 3 levels underneath the old city. Our very interesting hotel, called Hotel Las casas de la Judería, for the next 3 nights is a blend of 6 noble houses converted into a hotel, with rooms connected to open-air corridors connected in their turn with numerous courtyards filled with pot plants. It’s a magical place with a swimming pool on the roof with incredible views.
Casas y Palacios Hotel rooftop swimming pool

Casas y Palacios Hotel rooftop swimming pool

Gothic-style buildings

Gothic-style buildings

The Old Town was also just like Córdoba very charming. Being the third largest old town in Europe, it covered nearly 4 sq km – unfortunately not all pedestrianized. On a huge square are two UNESCO buildings: the cathedral the size of a large city block (but the queues were so long we never got a chance over the 3 days to go in) and the Royal Alcazar (royal palace) built during the 11th C over the remains of an Islamic settlement. Architecturally, many styles from Europe were incorporated into the Islamic design, such as Taifa, Almohad, Gothic, Mudéjar, Renaissance, Baroque, Mannerist and Neo-Classical into a harmonious structure. It is still a royal residence, of today’s King Carlos of Spain and is thus the oldest Royal Palace in Europe still in use. The gardens look like a giant chess board where squares of ‘garden rooms’ are separated from each other by hedges of box or cyprus, fountain courtyards and musical fountains. Sweet fragrance hangs in the air of gardenia, jasmine and end of season’s wisteria.

As a special treat for the early evening, we took a horse-carriage ride through Seville’s large gardens and the old town. Part of the route was even through some heavy traffic of multiple lanes! There were however many horse carriages around as well as mounted police on graceful white horses.

Courtyard of Alcazar Palace

Courtyard of Alcazar Palace

Known as Spal by the Phoenicians, the Romans established the city Hispalis which later became Seville. The city became very rich from explorations into central and South America and subsequent trading. The Seville harbour, located about 80 km from the Atlantic Ocean, is the only river port in Spain. Seville became the economic centre of the Spanish Empire when its port monopolised the trans-atlantic route: all ships departing and returning to and from the Americas had to go via Seville paying of course high taxes and duties to the city. It is by trade through this harbour, that produce from South America made its way into southern Spain: tomatoes, potatoes, chillies, bell peppers, spices and, of course, cacao.

Seville has some lovely cafés and large antique-looking coffee houses. We particularly liked one selling an array of traditional cakes, many of which are vegan. They spesialise in “Torta de aceite” cakes – yeasted flat biscuits made with olive oil and topped with spices. These are light, crispy and delicious. They have been made for over 100 years in the Seville region.

Pretty coffee house

Pretty coffee house

Roman villa in Italica

Roman villa in Italica

Just 9 km outside Seville, near the village of Santiponce is a fascinating archeological site, called Italica – an immense Roman city, founded in 206 BC with a population of 1/2 million, which was uncovered through excavations. One can walk along neatly paved streets lined with pillars; there are expansive Roman mansions, each with their own complex of bath and steam rooms; the foundations of villas (enough had been excavated that one can see the different rooms by the low walls) and beautiful mosaic floors. One can spend a whole day exploring this Roman city: we spent a long time in the amphitheatre with their perfectly preserved arched corridors, tunnels, the theatre’s sub-floors – only the stones of the seating area has been eroded somewhat.

Back from our drive to the archeological site, we went to a Japanese restaurant that was just opposite our hotel. There were so many vegan dishes to choose from! I had their marinated tofu, pickled vegetables, and sautéd broccoli dish.
Seville Japanese restaurant

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Córdoba Islamic decor

Córdoba Islamic decor

Neither the friendly voice of our GPS nor google maps on the iPhone could get us to our accommodation in Córdoba: the maze of pedestrian alleys, cobbled lanes and narrow one-ways had us driving in circles for over an hour. After yet another tight 5 point turn to turn around, reversing where turning was impossible and concluding that the old Arab quarter only has exiting one-ways, we parked the car at the nearest square. We unfolded our Brompton bicycles, clipped our panniers on, donned our rucksacks and placed the large heavy bag (our travelling kitchen) on my partner’s luggage rack. Heavily loaded we rattled over the round cobblestones in 45 degrees Celsius against the flow of the one-way streets. After only 10 minutes we arrived at our hotel-apartment ready to keel over from the heat. Apparently there was a call button to the hotel we could have pressed to activate a pillar to drop down for us to pass! The establishment was in a quiet part of the old Moorish town, with its rooms and Córdoba gardensapartments connected to a number of open-air courtyards. All shops, restaurants and hotels display this Moorish feature to have at least one courtyard: protected from the scorching sun, these areas are filled with plants (even the walls are covered with potted plants), a fountain and the whole space would be beautifully tiled in bright colours with intricate Islamic designs.

It is so hot and humid here that the only way to survive is to drink litres of water, take the siesta that irritates all visitors initially (everything closes anyway) from lunch until after dinner, and, my personal favourite, soaking in an ice-cold bath. The best time to view attractions is from 8pm to after mid-night when the temperature drops to about 35 degrees Celsius.

Narrow streets in Córdoba

Narrow streets in Córdoba


Córdoba is an enchanting place. The old town has winding narrow lanes laid out mosaic-style by flat river pebbles set on their edges in pretty white and black designs. Countless times we’d step inside hotels, shops and apartments’ front entrances to view the cool, inviting utopian courtyards. The orange tree lined streets would open up now and then to many small squares containing a fountain with drinkable water and a café.

On our first evening, our post-dinner perambulations through the little streets took us to the entrance of the imposing Cathedral. When we discovered we were just in time for the evening guided tour, we jumped at it. It was 10 o’clock, with the sun just starting to set and the temperature getting more comfortable. Saint Vincent, a Visigoth basilica stood on this site during the 600’s (its mosaic floors can be viewed through glass floor panels). After being conquered by the Moors, one of 4 stages of a grand mosque was built over the basilica foundations in the 8th century. Consisting of an astounding 11 naves, the mosque was extended by subsequent caliphs, replicating the exact style, to a massive structure that could accommodate 40 000 people! It was considered the most important sanctuary of Western Islam when Córdoba was the capital of Al-Andalus. One is awe-struck by the size and beauty of the interior: a forest of pillars in double-tier horse-shoe shape constructed in alternating red bricks and beige plasterwork, byzantine domes and immensely intricately carved screens and wall decorations. Much of the architectural designs and decorations reminded us of India. (See my blogs on our Indian trip.)

Córdoba mesquita and cathedral

Córdoba mesquita and cathedral

In 1236 Córdoba was won back by a Spanish King. It took 3 centuries until the 1600’s to add a huge cathedral inside the mosque structure, resulting in an aesthetically pleasing mix of gothic, renaissance and baroque. The gigantic proportions reminds one of St Peters in Rome, but here white plasterwork was used. Although most of the Islamic elements were retained, the minaret was embedded in the bell tower with the Christian

Téterie in Córdoba

Téterie in Córdoba

transformation of the structure, and the expansive Moorish courtyard gardens of palm trees inside the high walls were replanted with myrtle and orange trees to reflect Spanish traditional gardens.

Eggplant is served in various forms here: as a dip (closely resembles babaganoush), sliced in lengths then deep-fried or cut into slices which were slowly baked in a covered dish then served with smooth (but not too salty) black olive paste. Córdoba is also well-known for their Arabic-style tea cafés. One particular one we went to twice Córdoba tileswas called Salon de Te in Calle del Buen Pastor 13. The menu is Arabic and Lebanese, with a cosy atmosphere with lots of pot plants in their courtyard garden. Their impressive list has herbal, Andalucian, Indian and Chinese teas. They have vegan pastries, but ask the proprietor which are in fact vegan.

One early morning we went cycling along the river bank on excellent paved and painted cycle paths: it was 7:30 am and the sun was only just rising. It was magical with the orange sun and full moon simultaneously in the sky!! Afterwards, it was still cool enough to visit the beautiful gardens, the site of which used to be occupied by a Roman fort. The Roman baths can still be viewed today. The Via Augusta passes through Córdoba on its way to Barcelona. We have certainly come a long way ourselves so far.

Alcazar gardens in Córdoba

Alcazar gardens in Córdoba

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Baeza potOne day we drove from Jaen to two towns renowned for their Italian Renaissance architecture. Their prosperous history is evident in the neatly cobbled lanes, attractive upright houses, decorations and coats of arms mounted above imposing wooden door entrances and the lack of dilapidated buildings. Baeza, called Beatia by the Romans, was the first town in Andalusia to be won back from the Moors in 1225. It was then settled by Castilian knights, heralding an era of medieval splendour with many noble houses, squares and churches built. The town was a major centre for textile production. Map in hand, we wandered into the courtyard of a sand coloured building with slender arches: this was

A 1000 yr old Islamic tower in Baeza

A 1000 yr old Islamic tower in Baeza

one of Spain’s first universities, built in 1538. As we sat having our coffee and tea, and my partner savouring a sweet pastry typical of the town (a flaky pastry filled with a sweet apple-pumpkin paste), we sat looking at a very tall, bulky, square-shaped 1000 year old tower built by the Moors. I had buckwheat-cinnamon and raisin biscuits I bought from an organic shop in a previous town.

Old city walls and gate of Baeza

Old city walls and gate of Baeza


Just 8km away, we stopped to visit Úbeda. The town is still partly enclosed by high walls, built by the Moors in 852 AD. What used to be gatehouses, watchtowers and upper rooms in the walls have been converted into modern apartments. It was just after 1pm and already the temperature was 37 degrees Celcius; it will be warmest about 9 in the evening only to drop to 26 degrees Celsius about 4 in the morning. We sat down on a nice cold stone bench in one of the squares that was planted with plane trees and white blooming oleander bushes to eat juicy purple figs and dessert-sweet apricots.

Covered courtyard in Úbeda Parador Hotel

Covered courtyard in Úbeda Parador Hotel


We then walked to a Parador close-by to have lunch there. This used to be a very opulent and beautifully designed nobleman’s house. As part of the renovations, a massive glass-roofed atrium covered the inner courtyard where tea is usually taken. Plaques
against the walls relate
My Ajo Blanco soup

My Ajo Blanco soup

brief historical facts and incidents about the house. Since it was so hot, we decided to each have a starter only: cold tomato and vegetable blended soup for my partner, and ice-cold “ajo blanco” for me. This one was served the most traditional so far, with green grapes in the centre. Absolutely gorgeous! Here is my Ajo blanco recipe that is a light starter to any dinner party.

For dinner that night in the Parador my partner had a dessert that looked like set custard. A spice commonly used in this area in their desserts and biscuits is aniseed. So I quickly scribbled down an elegant vegan version: using pine nut or marcona (Spanish almond) thick milk I would bring it to the boil with a little corn starch to thicken, add some aniseed to steep; strain and set in pretty individual moulds. To serve, sprinkle over finely chopped almond praline (finely chopped almonds mixed with a little orange juice and coconut crystals, then dehydrated).

Decorated window in Úbeda

Decorated window in Úbeda

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As we’re going more south, the Moorish influence on the Iberian peninsula is becoming more evident: crumbling forts on hills portraying battles won and lost centuries ago while Arabic names of towns are written on modern day motorway signage.

Travelling to Jaen

Travelling to Jaen


Driving into the south one is constantly reminded of the legend of Don Quixote from the many hilarious statues next to the road. Expecting the drive to be uninteresting knowing how dry and hot the area is, we were pleasantly surprised at the colourful vistas: yellow cut fields of wheat and stacked bales of hay; ploughed red soil between orchards and blue-mauve mountains in the distance. We passed watermelon fields, ‘pimiento’ farms (a kind of bell pepper which is smoked and dried then pulverised to produce different types of paprika) and grey-green olive groves that stretch as far as the eye can see – sometimes covering entire hillsides. Brown stone houses are giving way to our first sight of the white villages of Andalusia.
Jaen Parador Hotel

Jaen Parador Hotel

Jaén will be our next stop for three nights. Our accommodation was again in a Parador Hotel – not in a monastery like the other Paradors so far, but in a modernised, extended part of the Castille de Santa Catalina Castle (formerly an Arabic fortress), built on top of a flat plateau, surrounded by even higher mountains with Jaén town way below. One evening at around 10pm when the sun was just setting, the peace of the valley was interrupted by wild boars fighting just below our balcony. What a terrible sound they make!

Olive Oil Greenway near Jaen

Olive Oil Greenway near Jaen

The name Jaén is derived from the Arabic word “jayyan”, (meaning ‘crossroads of caravans’): this town was in a strategic position between Andalusia and Castille. The town is also known as the World Capital of Olive Oil. When we did another bicycle ride on a “Via verde“, the Olive Oil Greenway: the path was compacted earth, the route which used to be a train line transporting the oil to the main centres for bottling. The path went over bridges and through hundreds of hectares of olive groves. The route is over 120km long, but in 39 degrees Celsius we only managed 44km.

View of Jaen from our Parador Hotel

View of Jaen from our Parador Hotel

There are many shops in the town and along the road that sell local produce like wine, olives and olive oil, dark chocolate, fruit in season and vinegars. The large number of convents and monasteries in the area bake their own distinctive items such as aniseed donuts, hazelnut truffles, almond shortbread, sweet pumpkin pies and savoury apple pies to name a few.

Starter of two little bowls of soup: Gazpacho and Ajo Blanco with condiments

Starter of two little bowls of soup: Gazpacho and Ajo Blanco with condiments

The Parador’s extensive menu (6 pages) was so good, we had all our lunches and dinners there. Apart from the pages of local plates and
Grilled vegetable dinner with added cashews and tempeh

Grilled vegetable dinner with added cashews and tempeh

speciality dishes, there were also a vegetarian page (mostly vegan dishes), a diabetic page and a gluten-free page. Each area has their own take on “Ajo blanco” (cold garlic-almond soup) which I loved. I just always ask how it was prepared: some modern places might use chicken stock, add chicken or ham, or use egg white or add boiled chopped egg. Look out for the recipe in the next blog.

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