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Posts Tagged ‘bread’

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Well as I was saying Petanca season has begun and this Sunday we were at Asco. Asco? well Asco is the home of one of the two nuclear power stations in Catalonia, and sits on the river Ebro. Like most places on the Ebro, Asco has its castle where the Knights Templer used to watch over their valley and river for invaders and collected taxes from the bargees.

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So off we set this morning under an uncertain sky, into town to pick up a club member, crossed the bridge – looks familiar? (ah well this bridge was here long long before a certain food company was formed the original was distroyed during the Spanish Civil War) turned inland and headed for the pass.  The road through this pass wends and winds it’s way along side the Ebre, which glides by towards the sea on its way from Asco.  This is a pleasant journey although short through the mountains, the green of shrub and trees covering one side contrasting with the bare rock on the other. This is a National Park area so there might be the chance to glimpse an Eagle or mountain Goat. What you do see is the river running quietly past gravel islands exposed reflecting the blue of the sky – well this morning it was a sort of greyish blue – then as it curves inland there are olive, fruit and  almond groves which stay with you until you cross the river again at the entrance to Asco.

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Now I have often mentioned the Petanca Breakfast. No? well this is it:  you have a bocadillo -a baguette with tomato rubbed into it then filled with Hammon (air-dried ham) plus olives accompanied by water and local red wine. Believe me it is something we all relish, a little something to wake you up and get you playing. This is the Tivissa group enjoying theirs, then comes the competition it’s self.

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Petanca is taken quite seriously here, and the local television station turns up to film the event. When it comes to prize giving they are there showing everyone receiving their prizes then interviewing the winners and secondplace teams.  As you can see from this picture there are Mora trees (the fruit is a cross between a blackberry and raspberry very tasty)  and the shade was certainly needed yesterday as it was in the 30 dgs range.

Well we started around 9am and the final was around 2pm with a Tivissa team coming second overall winning hams.  Third places won a large round goats cheese plus a large dried sausage then the rest of us won three bottles of Corbera d’Ebre young wines very nice too. This is a wine called Mas Del Tio which I am rather partial to, a very sippable wine so I was more than happy, and if you would like to know more this is the link http://bit.ly/qvGwGd.  So here are our clubs with our prizes, first Mora d’Ebre only two teams won:

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Then Tivissa, the individual and group photos:

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Yes this is an enjoyable game and also lots of fun. As the competitions are played on Sundays when everyone has a day off, they are definitely Fun In The Sun Sundays!

©    Michael Douglas Bosc

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It is that time of year again so last Sunday morning we were doing what has become a yearly event eating breakfast community style.  I have mentioned this before, but just incase this is the breakfast in question.

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First they light a large bonfire over which a grill is placed where the salted sardines are cooked before they are taken to be kept warm.

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Whilst this is going on ordinary BBQ’s are going with tomatoes, onions and garlic cooking, then kept warm in trays over more BBQ’s.

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In the meantime the bread is being prepared. Small loaves are cut in half then the center neatly cut out to make a pouch, these are then placed on tables ready to be put together as follows:  one sardine, two tomatoes, one large onion and finally a large clove of garlic.  These then go to the front table where you que, you get a bib – and you need it – and your plate of goodies.

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Now set out to one side are tables  with olive oil – this is an olive oil fiesta celebrating the harvest – red wine and of course olives.  So once you have your breakfast you pick your spot fill your loaf  then stand there munching and drinking (the dribbling goes without saying) not bad for 3Euros it it? We then wandered into the hall where the various villages have stands displaying their oil, with small baskets of bread so you can taste it. Yes, just like wine, there is a different flavour to each oil. Maybe not as different as wine but it is there.  Two years ago when we had our last olives pressed there was a distinct peppery taste to it, can’t say much about last year as we did not have any olives to press because of the drought.  But looking at the trees this year I am thinking we might be in luck this November.

Well that was our Sunday breakfast what was yours?

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Well this has certainly been a weekend of mixed events, we had intended to go to the Mora Morisca on Saturday but as is normal things went a little differently.

It started with the inverter going kaput and with the World Cup Final on Sunday we really had to go into Reus to get a replacement. Priorities rule and football being a must my wife did not pick up her camera football!! So about 5pm we set off going round the town as the streets were blocked off for the fiesta.  After purchasing the replacement, we drove back to town and parked the car walking to the old part which was decorated with banners flags and various coulorful awnings. There were stalls selling various cheeses, dried sausages, herbs and sweets with displays of craft work smithies, glass blowing metal and woodworkers. At the top of the town were the birds of prey falcons, owls, an eagle and one or two I do not know. 

Walking down to the main square we found people dressed in medieval clothes both Spanish and Moorish with plenty of bars open. We had been invited to join some friends in their house overlooking the square and spent a very pleasant hour in good company. Whilst there the owner of the bar outside the house asked if he could run a large screen off their electrics to show the football, this all arranged we decided to leave as we needed to eat.  We did not go down town to watch the match it was too hot for us but we saw it on tv and heard the celebrations the flashes of the fireworks could be seen from over the hills.

Then this morning about 7am I heard a noise outside the bedroom and found to my delight a small eagle. It had flown into the  small gazebo outside the sitting room window but was thankfully unhurt, life can be full of wonderful sights at times.

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