Blogs in this series

Life in Culebrón is a disconnected series of pieces about the banal and ordinary of everyday life in an inland Alicante village seen from my very British perspective.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Toast for breakfast

In Pinoso, in Cartagena and in Culebrón, if there were a bar, a typical breakfast food would be toast. In Alicante and Murcia that usually means a portion of a bread stick (they always ask if you want half or whole when you order) toasted and with something on top. By far and away the most popular are either oil and salt or grated tomato. Adding a slice of ham is optional and not standard but very common.

In Madrid on the other hand if you ask for toast in the morning it's usually a thick Mother's Pride type slice served with butter and jam. Down in Seville the breadstick type toast usually comes along with a three sectioned dish containing grated tomato and various fats (sobrasada and lard are common.) In Catalonia they seem to rub the tomato directly onto the toast rather than grate it first and rubbing the bread with garlic as well as tomato is very common.

So, this morning we were in la Rioja, in Santo Domingo de la Calzada to be precise. "How do you do the toast around here," I asked, "Do you have it with tomato?" The girl leaning on the bar didn't look too sure. Shell shocked by my appalling pronunciation I presumed. Then she asked her mum who was in the kitchen - "Butter and jam," she said,  "Did we want sliced bread or normal bread?"

Interesting little regional variation I thought.

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