Friday, May 27, 2016

The Perfect Martina in Mijas Pueblo

Before taxiing up to Mijas Pueblo Monday morning, I did some research on restaurants and found one that sounded good for lunch. Described by visitors as "off the beaten path" and "a quiet escape," Restaurante La Martina sounded like a good option.

It was better than good. It's on one of the main pedestrian streets in the center of town but the neighborhood very quickly became residential. In addition, La Martina is up some steps on a terrace that overlooks the street. The terrace was inviting but the sun was hot so I peeked inside. The long narrow interior opened onto another terrace out back. That terrace was even more inviting. We sat, the waiter rolled out an awning to provide some shade, and the day got even better. (Click the images to see how much better things got.)

THE FRONT TERRACE ON CALLE MÁLAGA.
THE BACK TERRACE.
FRIED CAMEMBERT TOPPED WITH RASPBERRY JAM.
COMPLEMENTS OF THE HOUSE.
HOMEMADE CHICKEN PATE.
MY REVUELTO (SPANISH SCRAMBLE) WITH SHRIMP AND MUSHROOMS.
JUDY'S REVUELTO WITH ASPARAGUS AND IBERIAN HAM.
LOOKING BACK DOWN CALLE MÁLAGA AFTER LUNCH.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Mijas Pueblo: A White Village

Andalusia is noted for, among so many things, its Pueblos Blancos (White Villages). There is a series of famed pueblos blancos along a recommended route through the northern parts of Cádiz and Málaga provinces. The villages are characterized by whitewashed walls and traditional red/brown tile roofs. Some were settled in prehistoric times and the cave paintings can still be seen. Roman ruins, ancient defensive walls, charm, and amazing vistas.

We have our own beautiful example here in the south just 7 kilometres away in the mountains and it's called Mijas Pueblo. It's a 10 minute car, bus, or taxi ride and it's taken me more than three years to get there. Judyshannonstreetwhat and I visited Mijas Pueblo Monday. From the top, we could see our home in Fuengirola, which seemed ages away.

And there was great shopping and seriously good food, too!  Food photos are still to come.

(Click the images for grander views.)










Monday, May 23, 2016

Toledo Trinkets And Tasty Treats

Although I have perhaps another 400 photos from Toledo, I've decided to save you the agony. You've seen enough here (for now at least). However, we did buy ourselves some trinkets at a very special shop owned by a very special couple. The shop is called Arte and it can be found on Calle Hombre de Palo, 19 (a short street behind the Cathedral).

Toledo is known for its Damasquinado or Damasquina (in English, Damascene). It's the art of decorating steel with threads of gold and silver — and also known as Toledo Gold. Toledo is famous for this handicraft, which is used on everything from swords (Toledo steel), knives, scissors, and other sharp instruments I try to avoid; as well as for jewelry, platters, art, and much more.

Judy bought herself a watch with a beautifully intricate bracelet band, as well as a couple of pairs of exquisite scissors for sewing.

I bought myself a wrist band/bracelet (pulsera in Spanish) and a couple of pairs of earrings.

The earrings are for the two holes in my left ear that My Mother The Dowager Duchess forbade me to pierce in 1994 (when I was 40). Months later, the first time she saw me with my ear pierced, she complained that my earrings were too small!



Although what I chose for myself was not tourist-grade trash (thats not available at Arte) it was very simply done and inexpensive. San Geraldo and I first found Arte on our own. What drew us in was a window display of some beautifully done glass pieces containing Klimt images. We ended up buying a candle holder that stands about six inches (15 cm) tall.

KLIMT'S "THE WOMAN IN GOLD."

Toledo is also known for its Marzipan (mazapan). I had never been much of a fan of marzipan, appreciating it only as art because I didn't realize there was more to it than the fruit forms in fruit colors. Then I discovered Spanish mazapan! Below is the box I bought at a very special shop called Santa Tomé. Don't expect to get a taste. They're gone. San Geraldo didn't even get a taste. I thought he didn't like mazapan. I swear! I really thought he didn't like it. Honest!

But I'm not as bad as Judyshannonstreetwhat. She bought a box of mazapan and said she was going to give it to Tynan and Elena (Note: Not share with, give to).

A few days later, Judy admitted the plan had changed since there wasn't much left in the box.

The reason? "Well, I was worried it wouldn't stay fresh after it was opened."

THE BOX.
AFTER I REMOVED THE SEAL FROM OURS ... MINE.
I THEN ALSO WORRIED IT WOULD LOSE ITS FRESHNESS.


Because I love Laura Nyro and because she says "marzipan" around 4 minutes and 12 seconds into this 5-minute and 7-second song...