Spanish food culture
>>>Spanish Rioja is much better than BordeauxWell.
the thing is that some probably are:n
Food and drink in Spain facts
Iu2019m not Spanish, Iu2019m Irish but I lived in Spain for 7 and a half years and picked up a few habits while living there that I havenu2019t given up despite having left over a year ago.
,Having my u201cbig mealu201d at lunchtime: before moving to Spain, I used to have a sandwich and maybe a small bowl of soup for lunch at the usual lunchtime of 1pm but now, as I work in the morning and the evening as an English teacher, I come home and make myself what we would call u201cdinneru201d (big hot meal) in Ireland and eat it at around 2u20133pm or if I stay at work, I bring in a u201ctupperu201d with my dinner in it.
When I see my colleagues eat their pathetic little sandwiches at lunchtime, I genuinely pity them!,I have to have a snack with my drink: I became so used to having a tapa that I took it for granted and now I have to have something with my beer/wine (which you usually have to pay for here if you can get it at all) or I feel like some crucial element to my enjoyment in a bar is missing and I get a bit antsy.
More than just being a tasty little snack to have with a drink, a tapa acts as soakage and stops you from getting too tipsy and messy after a few drinks.
This is one of the reasons you donu00b4t see very drunk Spaniards out and about on a night out in Spain.
,Dressing a bit smarter/more neatly than I used to.
In Ireland, fashion-wise, literally anything goes.
Tracksuits are seen as suitable attire to go about your business whereas in Spain, theyu2019re worn exclusively for exercise.
I used to see people in supermarkets in their pyjamas in Dublin the odd time.
In fact, I remember popping across the road to the bank in my pyjamas and coat a few times when I lived in Dublin as a student and nobody batted an eyelid.
In Spain, you will be judged more on how you present yourself and I unconsciously adapted to this and got used to putting a bit more effort into my appearance than Iu2019d done.
Here in Amsterdam nobody gives a damn what you wear, even more so than in Ireland (wearing jeans to a wedding is acceptable, for example) but Iu2019ve still maintained the Spanish habit of at least looking neat and tidy and leaving the trainers for the gym and I canu2019t see myself going back to how I was, tbh.
,Being a bit black and white when it comes to politics: in Spain youu2019re from u201cthe leftu201d or u201cthe rightu201d, whereas in Ireland, politics is quite centrist and we have no real history of a right and left-wing division and people traditionally wouldnu2019t identify so much with either (though this has changed a bit in recent years).
Coalitions between the right and left in Ireland have been a common enough occurrence (though the right dominate) which is unheard of in Spain for obvious reasons if you know anything about Spanish history.
In Spain, without meaning to, I became a little fixated on the division that existed there and assumed my position on the political spectrum like many (most?) people.
Like Ireland, this doesnu00b4t really apply here in The Netherlands either as coalitions between the left and right occur but Iu2019ve found the u201cblack and whiteu201d mentality hard to shake off.
,Taking a 20 minute siesta in the afternoon.
Yes, yes, Iu2019m well aware that most Spaniards donu2019t do this in modern times but it is something I picked up while living there and it is seen as a traditionally Spanish habit thatu2019s not really the done thing at all in Northern Europe.
I used to work very long days while living in Madrid and had a bit of time in the afternoon to pop home to grab a quick 20-minute siesta, particularly during the very hot summers.
Also, whenever I had lunch in my (Spanish) boyfriendu2019s familyu2019s house on Sunday afternoon, Iu2019d get a bit drowsy after all the food and drink and it was perfectly acceptable for me to slip away for a little while for a quick snooze (the rest of them would often do the same) then come back refreshed.
,Being more direct than I was.
In Ireland, we tend to flower up our language and any request will often be preceded with expressions such as u201cwould you mindu201d or u201csorry to bother but could Iu2026.
u201d and youu2019re almost apologetic for u201cinconveniencingu201d the barman/waitress/shop assistant with your u201csillyu201d requests for a drink or whatever (obviously youu2019re not but thatu2019s whatu2019s considered polite).
In Spain, I had to cut the bullshit and ask for what I wanted directly and with confidence or Iu2019d be ignored and itu2019s a habit I havenu2019t lost.
It takes me a while to adapt to the Irish way when I go home.
,Greeting people in toilets/lifts/doctoru2019s waiting rooms/other random places etc.
I donu2019t care if I come across as a weirdo outside of Spain - this is one of the best things I picked up there and I refuse to lose it.
I am not a big meat eater at all (though Iu2019m not a veggie) but I make an exception for Jamu00f3n.
We have a Spanish food shop close to us here in Amsterdam and we sometimes treat ourselves to some Jamu00f3n and Manchego! Jamu00f3n totally deserves the hype - itu2019s the food of gods!,Edit: A few other things I forgot:,About 70% of my diet is garbanzos (chickpeas) and lentejas (lentils).
This is the leftovers from my dinner last night (a Spanish speciality made from spinach and chickpeas):,Was delighted when I saw this for sale in the supermarket to cook with my lentils:,Weu2019re (Spanish fella and I) obsessed with putting everything in our fridge in tupperware.
,The very first thing we went out and bought when we moved into the flat was this (invented in Spain, dontcha know!), though Spanish Man is more obsessed with actually using it then me - dirty floors donu2019t bother me as much where heu2019s borderline OCD about it:,In addition, I still use words and expressions like, u201ccutreu201d (shoddy/crappy/), u201cEstu00e1s como una cabrau201d (youu2019re crazy), u201cvenga!u201d (come on! Get moving!), u201cde mala lecheu201d (to describe a not-very-nice person) and u201cbarriou201d(neighbourhood) and of course, u201chija de putau201d (son of a bitch) because theyu2019re far superior to their English equivalent.
,I am, in some ways, more Spanish than many Spaniards!,Edit: As of June 2019, I have a beautiful Spanish-Irish baby in my life making our little family 50% Spanish! Olu00e9!