Ever feel like life is a roller coaster and every time is starts to slow down, it takes off again? In my case, perhaps a speeding train would be more like it. For the last year or so, I just seem to be headed to one experience after another. Throughout it all, I have enjoyed taking photos, but I haven’t taken the time to pause and do anything with them. Currently, my husband and I are living the dream (O.K. – maybe his dream!) of traveling around the United States in a motor home. Check out our travel blog at Yates RV Adventures. A couple of weeks ago, we were staying at a RV “resort” in Naples, Florida. These parks typically are a mix of prefab homes and recreational vehicles. As I was passing one of the homes, I was startled to see a mannequin guarding the door. My memory was jolted back to another mannequin I had seen when we were in Spain visiting my daughter Allison just several months ago. All of a sudden I realized I had tons of photos and lots of experiences from that trip that I had never shared or done anything with because the train I was on never slowed down. The Spanish mannequin I remembered was looking out onto the Mercado de San Miguel in Madrid. It was the first of the many fabulous markets we encountered on that trip. It had booth after booth of beautiful produce, meat, and seafood. Best of all, it had delicious ready made food that could be eaten right there or taken away for a meal at home. One dish every market in Spain had was Tortilla Espanola. This Spanish tortilla is basically a very yummy potato torte and is a common every day food in Spain. A wedge of it could be an entre, or cut in squares and served with aioli, it is often part of a tapas spread. The lady of the house where Allison was staying made it for us one night for supper and I saw how simple and easy it was to make. In this post are photos of some markets we saw on our travels. Below them is a recipe for Tortilla Espanola.
The classy senorita on the left overlooks the Mercado de San Miguel. The American mannequin on the right surveys the trailer park.
Above is the beautiful Mercado de San Miguel, a wonderful market in San Miguel Plaza in Madrid.
This is a shot of my daughter Jennifer walking into a market in Porto, Portugal. Whether they were big or small, these places of commerce offered fresh meat and produce and we thought they were all charming.
The Mercado de Ribeira in Lisbon, Portugal had the largest food court we had ever seen. The market area was in one side of the building, and the Time Out Food Hall was in the other half.
Beautiful greens in the famous La Boqueria on La Rambla in Barcelona.
The Mercat Nou in Ibiza, Spain sold every thing from tea and liquor made from local herbs to their famous salt and honey.
Of course the market in Ibiza had an offering of take away foods, including a Spanish Tortilla.
Ingredients and Procedure for Tortilla Espanola:
Ingredients for Spanish Tortilla:
4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 medium sized onion, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon Spanish paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch saffron (optional)
Ingredients for Garlic Lemon Sauce:
1/2 cup good quality mayonnaise
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 clove garlic, put through press or finely minced
pinch Spanish paprika
pinch saffron (optional)
Procedure for Spanish tortilla:
In a skillet, saute the onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon and set the onions aside in a mixing bowl. Add 1/4 of olive oil and the sliced potatoes to the pan. Cook, covered, over fairly low heat for 20 to 25 minutes – gently turning over once at 10 minutes. Potatoes will be done when they are easily pierced with a fork but still retain their shape. Carefully remove the potatoes from the pan with a slotted spoon and add to the onions in the bowl. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of oil from the pan. Whisk the eggs, salt, paprika, pepper, and saffron together. Pour the egg mixture over the potatoes and onions. Gently mix the to coat the potatoes and onions. Add the potato mixture to the pan and cook over low heat. As the tortilla slowly sets up, run a rubber spatula along the sides to create a rounded edge. When the tortilla is almost completely firm, remove the pan from the heat. Place a plate on top of the skillet and using pot holders or a kitchen towel to prevent being burned, flip the pan over so that the tortilla is on the plate. Then slide the tortilla off the plate and onto the skillet. Place back on low heat and cook another 3 to 5 minutes. Invert onto a serving plate and either cut into slices as a main dish or small squares as part of a tapas spread.
Procedure for Garlic Lemon Sauce
Whisk together mayonnaise, lemon juice, garlic, paprika, and saffron.
I’d love to hear anyone else’s experiences with the markets in Spain or Portugal!