Friday, April 11, 2014

Spanish Food Epiphany

One food that I have hated all my life are olives. I have always found them to be just salty and sour, especially my dad’s favorite, dried. Yuck! Spain is one of the biggest exporters of olive oil and olives are served with everything here. When I first arrived I avoided them like the plague. They were tossed into salads, on sandwiches and sitting there menacingly on my plate trying to contaminate my tapa with its salty juices.

My first year in Almeria I lived with an American girl and her boyfriend was at our house a lot. The only plus about that was he was from a small town outside of Almeria where his family had a lot of orange, lemon and olive trees. So, one weekend after they got back with bags and bags of free oranges they also brought some home pressed olive oil and a few jars of Manzanilla olives. Everyone was raging about how good they were. I wasn’t convinced. During a dinner party (a few drinks may have been involved) they convinced me to try one. And you know what? It was pretty darn good!

almeria roomies
A night out with my roommates in Almeria
That was my one and only olive for awhile until I went out tapeando with a friend one night. During a lull in the conversation she looked down and said: “I thought you hated olives…” I didn’t even realize I had eaten the ones on my plate! After that I could not be stopped. I was buying olives at the markets and going through about a jar a week by myself! I have since calmed down and enjoy olives in more reasonable quantities…and I consider myself very lucky to be living in a country with such fresh and delicious olives!

IMG_4607
yum :)