ıslak Burger, a steamed burger.

Wet and Ugly: The ıslak Burger

“It’s our hamburger. It’s small and it’s wet,” said my new Turkish friend. We had spent the day roaming the narrow alleys of Kadıköy Market on the Asian side of Istanbul, and I had stuffed my face with room temperature street mussels, minced meat flatbreads and a sketchy looking sandwich made with frozen fish from Norway. I had a…

Bacalao (Cod) Pil-Pil) at La Parisien in Cádiz

That Bacalao al Pil Pil at La Parisien in Cádiz

Our best meal in Andalucía was a lunch in Cádiz at a pretty Paris-bistro-style restaurant named La Parisien with its terrace flooding out onto the pint-sized Plaza de San Francisco. Located in a slightly less touristy area of the historical center, the plaza offers a great place to sit and admire the 16th century San Francisco…

Sea Urchin at Mercado Central de Abastos in Cádiz

That Cone of Shrimp and Sea Urchins in Cádiz

We left the rincón gastronómico area of the Mercado Central de Abastos satisfied but sure that the snacking portion of our culinary journey had come to an end. It was time to find a nice plaza and a restaurant terrace to sit in, with proper wine service and more substantial plates to share. It was, after all,…

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The Octopus and the Hare at La Cooperativa in Porrera

On a recent excursion to Priorat wine country I acted the tour guide for my mother and my man. I lead them to the little cottage in the mountains of Montsant, which I had called home for close to six months. We walked through the town of Poboleda and had a beer on the terrace of ye olde La Venta. I…

Sanjacobo at Bar La Cávea in Córdoba

That Salmorejo, Oxtail and Sanjacobo at Bar La Cávea in Córdoba

We arrived in the super-Catholic Spanish city of Córdoba at 3 p.m. on Good Friday, the last day of the very somber Semana Santa (Holy Week), and braced ourselves for a long night of religious processions. The streets were packed with terrifying Nazarenos, anonymous under their cone-shaped head gear, carrying large candles, people everywhere declaring their…

5

A Homey Bowl of Cassoulet at La Mare aux Canards

It was our first getaway together from Barcelona; a two-hour drive up the coast to the border and an hour more upward and inward into France. He had kept our destination a secret until we rolled into the quaint town of Carcassonne, passing the beautifully lit Château Comtal en route to our inn. As I peered through the…