Saturday, March 22, 2014

Calçotada 2014

Every country in the world has its own traditions. Some involve keeping things very clean. Some related to fertility and egg worship. Some even involve giant bedding and drums! But my favorites are always those centered around food. How about a pointy-cabbage festival? Or maybe a wine-drinking one? Well, guess what, Barcelona and Catalunya are no slouches when it comes food-related traditions.

Right around the beginning of March every year, people all over Catalunya can be seen carrying bags full of what appear to be giant screen scallions. These onions are called calçots and they're generally cooked and eaten at barbecues called Calçotadas, which I've written about before. As luck would have it, Vladimir decided to invite the "familia Latina" (our group of friends - lots of whom are Latinos) to his apartment to do our very own caçotada!

Me and Marcos, who's not a Latino, washing the soil off the calçots (by the way, that funny letter-c-looking thing is pronounced like an "s"):

Marcos and Vladimir manning...and I mean MANNING...the grills:

At a traditional Calçotada, onions aren't the only thing served up. There's usually some regional sausages and other meat grilled as well. Marcos is our resident meat expert, and apparently grilling pro, so he did lots of the honors while David helped out by keeping the fires burning hot:

I've mentioned it in past stories but I don't like onions. For some reason, calçots are different. Maybe it's the tradition. Maybe it's the fun of being around friends. Or, maybe it's that mysterious, but delicious, Romescu sauce (the red sauce in the yellow bowl below) the calçots are coated with. Either way, calçots are always delicious and the parties are usually even better:

Yummy! Big onions dipped in sauce! What could be better? Leiris and Vladi doing it right:

Thanks to Vladimir for hosting us again and to the familia Latina for making it such a fun time. I'm already looking forward to next year's version!

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