Spain on the other hand has good fresh simple food at really affordable prices. To go into the fish market at Cadiz and not be able to smell that horrible fishy smell you get from the fish section at some supermarkets is incredible.
The variety of shell fish was amazing. The other incredible thing was that there were about 50 stalls selling what appeared to be the same products yet some stalls would have a queue of people waiting to buy and others were dead quiet. Obviously the locals have their favourites and know which ones sell the freshest produce.
The fruit and vegetable sections are a riot of colour with all sorts of produce and remarkably cheap prices. When we first went to Europe the markets only had fresh, seasonal locally grown produce so you were assured that if there were tomatoes they were rich, ripe and flavoursome and strawberries were sweet and succulent. These days with the EEC there is a greater variety of fruit and vegetables but they aren't necessarily locally grown or as ripe, especially in the supermarkets. Farmers market are still the best bet for fresh produce.
|how cheap are the clementines!!!|
Another great tapas meal was encountered in a small bar on the route between Barcelona and Marbella. It was a tiny roadside cafeteria attached to a petrol station. Next door was a big restaurant that was busy with Saturday lunch and looked a bit more upmarket but we opted for the more casual meal. The staff didn't speak any English and we didn't speak any Spanish but several plates of food had just been delivered to a group at one of the tables. It looked delicious so we pointed to it and indicated we would have the same. Out came the obligatory home pickled olives - very bitter (maybe needed longer brining) and then our order appeared. Deep fried calamari and the most amazing prawns in what looked like empanada batter. They were so fresh and absolutely delicious - we ordered another one. We then had the Spanish version of creme caramel to finish off - and all for under €10.