Monday, January 23, 2012

Andorra: Cooking Around the World with Camilla (CATWWC)

When I began researching a menu for our Andorran dinner, I realized that today was actually Chinese New Year and figured we'd go with Chinese for dinner tonight. But I was soundly vetoed by two little boys who are loving our cooking around the world adventure. "No, Mom, we're on the 'A's not the 'C's." So, I decided to skip the duck friend rice and braised bok choy that I had planned and went full steam-ahead with the Andorran planning.

If you search online for "Andorran recipes" or "Andorran cuisine", you get very few results. I looked at what Sasha from Global Table Adventures cooked for her Andorran feast and, as good as hers looked, I wanted something a little bit more exotic than a potato-cabbage pancake, though I did make the same appetizer. Then I found a link between Andorran cuisine and Catalan cuisine and ran with that; there were so many more options for Catalan recipes.

So, we're on to country number four of our Cooking Around the World adventure. Here we go. We're moving to a tiny - and I do mean tiny - country that is sandwiched between France and Spain, high in the Pyrenees. Dinner tonight was made up of a two savory dishes and two sweets from ANDORRA, the fourth country on the list.

Country: Andorra
Due to the fact that Andorra is sandwiched between France and Spain, it cuisine reflects those influences. In the northern part of the country, Andorran cooks use pasta, cheese, bread, and fish; while in the southern part  of the country, the food is mainly Catalan. From my reading, they cook a lot with rabbit and lamb. Wanting to use what I had on-hand, I opted to make a Catalan dish with snails and sausages. Yes, you read that correctly: snails. And I really did have escargot in my cupboard - it was a stocking stuffer from my mom at Christmas! I know, I know, that is not normal. But it was there and made this dinner a snap to make.

Here's what we ate on our tabletop journey to Andorra...

Pa amb Tomaquet (Bread with Garlic & Tomato)
Resembling Italian bruschetta in flavor, this starter allowed the boys to play with their food! They loved it.

Cargol (Cooked Snails)
Snails are quite popular in Catalonia and are given to a proverb: Al juliol ni dona ni cargol (In July, neither women nor snail). What does that mean? But my research revealed another snail-based proverb from Sicily that made much more sense: Babbaluci a sucari e donni a vasari 'un ponnu mai saziari (Snails to suck out and women to kiss, that's all one needs to be satisfied). I am not sure my husband would agree with that one! I was very proud of all my boys for trying these.

Xocolata Espanyola and Xurros (Andorran Hot Choocolate and Baked Pastry)
While we didn't have any real dessert with our Algerian feast, we had two treats for our Andorran dinner - a delectably thick chocolate drink into which we dunked cinnamon-sugar coated pastries. Yum.

Enjoy my tabletop travels. Join me in whipping up a dish or two. If you do cook something from one of these countries, I'd love to hear about it. Feel free to comment on the posts themselves or email me at constantmotioncamilla at gmail dot com.

This Knight of the Global Table Adventure is signing off for now. We're off to Angola next.

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