Food is an integral part of Spanish culture. There are three main meals. * Breakfast (desayuno) is a light meal consisting of a white coffee (café con leche) or chocolate with churros or a pastry. Churros are small rolls of fried pastry. * Lunch (comida/almuerzo) is often the main meal of the day and is eaten around 2.30 in the afternoon. * Dinner (cena) is eaten late, often after 10pm. This can also be a light meal. Spain is very family oriented and even small children can be out late at night for cena. Tapas are served with drinks in bars, usually free unless someone wants a large portion. Typical tapas are: * Boquerónes - Small white fish fillets in oil * Albondigas - Meatballs, usually in a tomato sauce * Ensalada Rusa - Russian salad * Ensalada de Boca - Crabstick salad * Huevos en Mayonesa - Eggs in mayonnaise * Callos - tripe with chickpeas * Magro - Pork pieces in tomato sauce * Tortilla - Omelette * Gambas Pil Pil - Prawns in a hot, garlic oil Though popular, tapas are a relatively recent addition to Spanish culture. The custom of offering small side dishes to accompany a drink is believed to date from the 20th century.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|