Salamanca

Salamanca, the trip there and back!

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Tis the season for discounted clothing! Twice per year Spain’s fashionistas and fashionistos go from recreational shoppers to maniacal addicts, and all for no small reason. Marks on clothing and shoes are a fraction of their former prices frequently 50, 70 or even 90% off retail. Maybe I should back up, Rebajas really aren’t just for the clothing-obsessed, they’re a serious mainstay in the Spanish calendar year that it seems almost everyone partakes in. Even my colleagues ask giddily if I’ve been shopping yet since Rebajas started (thanks for asking yes, I have.)

If you’re from anywhere other than Spain reading this you probably think it’s mildly crazy the shop-til-you-drop scene and I’ll be the first to admit that it is. However unlike most places, Spain’s ebb and flow of sales and thoughtfully planned marketing strategies are just, well, non existent. Certainly not placed throughout the year or on a per-store basis. What I mean is that close to nothing is on sale here unless you wait for Rebaja: the time period just after Christmas and again in the dead of summer. The stores all stock with the past 6 months of merchandise and literally everything is on sale for a fraction of its original price. Here’s some of what I picked up:

imageBlack leather boots with metal details, camel colored pants, a leopard print silk hair scarf, a floral print top, and a wool cape

One of my new years resolutions was to entertain my food curiosities, since well, I live in Spain. There are so many foreign ingredients here, things a dictionary can’t really define and what better way to learn them than by tasting. Shitty kitchen aside here we go with the first ingredient!

Every time I go to the market, I see this fruit and it looks more like a dinosaur egg than anything edible so after avoiding it for months I finally asked the stall owner of my favorite frutería what the hell it is. Apparently “pudding apples” are very seasonal here in the Mediterranean, known locally as chirimoya. When ripe they’re green with brown marks and soft to the touch – sold, I sliced mine open and dug right in with a spoon. It tastes like a frutti-tutti-banana-strawberry smoothie and has a texture like slime…actually tasty although you’d never believe me based on that description. I cooked the other half and made a sauce for some sole and lentils with saffron. Real good.