Top Bar

Archive | Spain

Learning To Cook Classic Valencian Paella

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Heading to Spain, there was one thing I knew I wanted to try. Paella! Originating in Valencia, I decided to make a trip down the coast and take a class to learn how to make the original Valencian Paella.

The first time I tried Paella was at one of my bride’s wedding that I was photographing. They both loved Spain and decided to serve Paella as their main course. I remember it containing mussels, clams, shrimp, and andouille sausage. So many different flavors that all mixed together really well.

Upon arriving in Valencia, I learned the original Paella, wasn’t seafood but made of chicken, rabbit, snails and four kinds of beans. A stark contrast to the seafood creations I’ve had.

MARKET TOUR

First up was a market tour at Mercado Central de Valencia where we purchased all the ingredients. We learned the best way to get the most flavor is for each piece of meat to have a bit of bone in it. We also went to purchase saffron and learned about the different qualities and the best one to use. This recipe also calls for four types of beans, FOUR! Each brings its unique flavor to the dish.

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

MAKING VALENCIAN PAELLA

Our teacher had us pair up in teams. Instead of showing us how to cook with us just watching, he talked us through it having use do each step of the process. Each team used a 16-inch diameter pan to create the dish. I thought it would be a lot for two people to finish, but we had no problem polishing it off, snails and all!

To make the dish, we first made the broth from scratch in the pan, then added ingredients with a few fun techniques that I explain in the recipe. After adding the rice and waited for the paella to finish we were served plenty of wine with mussels.

After our creations were complete, we went outside for an epic picture and then sat down to taste the results of our labor. Surprisingly everyone’s paella tasted different. We all used the same ingredients, but some may have used a little less or more salt or cooked their broth just a little bit longer or shorter. Just these little tweaks made a huge difference in flavor. All of them tasted really good!

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

When I make paella in the future, I know no two will ever taste the same. Now that I have the base for making paella I can branch out and create my own. I can make it with traditional meat, using local seafood, or creating an amazing vegetarian version. This recipe is one that doesn’t follow strict rules.

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

Paella Cooking Class - Valencia, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Pin It For Later!




A Week In Barcelona, Spain

 

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Barcelona is home to great artists Dali, Picasso and Gaudi. The small alleyways are packed with boutiques, bodegas, and the hole in the walls selling amazing tapas and cava for super cheap. Mixed with a great vibe and outdoor cafes at every turn it’s my dream city. It was love at first sight. Here’s a list of things I did while I was in Barcelona.

VISIT BARCELONA’S BEACH AND WATERFRONT

Being a water girl, one of the first things I did was walk Barcelona’s water-front and spend time at the beach. The waterfront is filled with seaside restaurants and shops. There’s also a mall and an aquarium too. The beach is packed with locals and tourists a like. It’s a great day out and feels like you’re nowhere near the city when you’re really only a couple of blocks away.

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

WITNESS GAUDI’S ART

One can not come to Barcelona without visiting at least one of Gaudi’s pieces of art, whether you visit the famous dragon at Park Guell, the amazing house of Casa Batllo, or the La Pedrera residences. His works of art will amaze you. I could have stayed in Casa Batllo all day!

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World



 

VISIT LA SAGRADA FAMILIA

One of Gaudi’s most famous art work is the Sagrada Familia which has been under construction since 1892. This Catholic church is a whole façade of sculptures of Gaudi’s vision. It is a UNESCO world heritage site, and Pope Benedict XVI consecrated it in 2010. It is planned to be completed in 2026 which is the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death.

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

EXPLORE SANTA CLARITA MARKET

I loved this market! You can find everything here from fruits, vegetables, meat, seafood, cheese, and wine. There are also a few cafes outside and inside the market. Don’t miss out on eating at Bar Joan and having their Menu Del Dia (Menu of the day)!

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

STUFF YOURSELF SILLY ON TAPAS

I stuffed myself silly on tapas! Spain knows how to do it right! From potato bravas to la bombas, there really wasn’t anything I didn’t like! My friends over at In Pursuit Of Adventure published a guide to eating Catalan cuisine having lived there during their travels. I ate at over 15 restaurants in their book! If you’re heading to Barcelona, this book is a must have on your Kindle!

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World



 

WANDER THE STREETS OF BARCELONA

I had the best time just walking the streets of Barcelona. The windy alleys were so inviting. There are so many boutiques and cafes in each nook and cranny. I’d wander through alleys and Bodega hop, stopping for wine and tapas along the way.

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

 

PICASSO MUSEUM

I wasn’t allowed to take pictures inside, but this is definitely worth visiting. It showcases Picasso’s work from the very beginning to his death. It was beautiful to see the progression of his craft through the years.

 

Top Things To Do In Barcelona, Spain - Robyn Around The World

Pin It For Later!




All Rights Reserved