The first time I visited Spain in 2009 I fell in love with it and the thing I loved the most of course was the food. I had life changing gazpacho, more Paella and sea food that imaginable, calamres del campo, thirst quenching and delicious mojitos and sangria’s oh and I even fell in love with the sea salt so much I took a kilo of it home with me. The next time I visited “Spain” was in November 2011 when I took a trip to Tenerife in the Canary Islands. While there I fell in love with more seafood and tried patatas arrugadas for the first time. A tiny little potato basically boiled dry in salt water. Drool.
Patatas arrugadas in Tenerife
When visiting Spain in September 2012, I didn’t think it had many more tricks up it sleeves for amazing food I hadn’t yet tried but boy was I wrong. I had crazy good patatas bravas for the first time and then… Enter the “Pa Amb Tomaquet“. ( or Pa Amb Oil). I was visiting Girona, Catalonia (the debate over Spain and Catalonia is not one I know enough about to properly discuss, lets just not talk about it here) and at a few different meals I experienced the gloriousness that is Pa Amb Tomaquet aka Bread with Tomato. Simple sounding. Yes. But sometimes thats the best isn’t it?
As it was explained to me this treat / dish / way of eating bread started when locals bread would go stale and it was a way of giving it a second life so it wouldn’t go to waste. They would cut a tomato in two and literally shred it (like a block of cheese across a grater) on a slice of bread. They would then add a sprinkle of salt and a drizzle of olive oil and bon appetit!
Often also served with cheeses and many different types of cured meats. Now a days it isn’t really made with stale bread so much but it is still enjoyed with either toasted bread or a a bread that is more coarse than most with a tougher crust.
I have ye to attempt to make this at home, but I plan on doing it very soon. Apparently the kind of tomatoes we have here in Canada aren’t right for this, but a girl can try. Does this look like something you might like to try? Check out the simple instructions below for making your very own Pa Amb Tomàquet.
Eating this dish everywhere I went in Catalonia, truly made me feel like a local which fit because I just so happened to also do a mini press trip there which was themed “live like a local” in Girona. Special thanks to Jaume Marin and the Visit Costa Brava Tourism board for my trip and introducing me to yet another food I can become addicted too.