Food memories can be so much more than just something to eat when you are hungry. One bite of a favorite dish and you can be transported back to a place or event from your past.
I have many happy food-related memories, including dining on fish and chips at Doyle’s in Watson’s Bay, Sydney, devouring a kebab from a van in the early hours of the morning after a night of drinking in Oxford, UK, warming up with freshly grilled Bratwurst paired with mulled wine in Munich’s famous Christkindlmarkt, or sharing a pizza with my family during movie night at home on Fridays.
But for me, there is nothing like a traditional Spanish tortilla to bring back images of childhood, holidays in Spain, and picnics on the beach. Connected to so many good memories, it is a comfort food of sorts for both my family and me.
Just like the avarca is synonymous with a Spanish summer, so to me is the tortilla. When we arrive in Spain for our summer holidays, it has become a ritual kick off the shoes we wore on the plane, slide on our avarcas, head to the nearest shop, buy a pre-made tortilla, some chorizo, a freshly baked baguette and a 6-pack of San Miguel.
Check out our spread from last summer in Menorca below. We hadn’t unpacked yet, but we had scouted the nearest local provisions! To us, this is the look and flavor of a Mediterranean summer. Ole!
Below I share my 10-year-old sons’ school assignment that he wrote when asked to share a family recipe. I was proud he picked the tortilla and that, like his mum, for him it conjures up strong family memories. Get the frying pan out and give it a try yourself.
What dish holds strong memories for you? Please share in the comments and if you do attempt a tortilla using Luis’ recipe, I know he would love to see photos!