Tag: Spain

Foodie Swellness: Delicious Olives from Spain

Olives from Spain 1

Although I did not grow up eating olives from Spain (I actually was probably an adult before I tried them for the very first time), but they’re now something I can’t live without. I’ll regularly crave them (coincidentally, one of my cats loves tapenade, she is so much my spirit animal!).

I don’t see how one can’t love olives from Spain. They’re so versatile, for one. A simple bowl of them with your cheese and charcuterie boards. Or add olives from Spain for a brine-y bite to your salads or pasta dishes (pasta puttanesca is a classic favourite!). Baked into a focaccia so that each doughy bite has a bit of olives from Spain. And what about chicken? On it’s own, a pretty bland protein. Incorporate lemon and whichever variety of olives from Spain you can find at your local supermarket into your sauce, though, and you’ve got one mouthwatering, flavourful main course.

The different ways you can enjoy olives are practically endless when you also consider that there are so many wonderful varieties from Spain. I’m not an olive connoisseur but I try to pick up a variety I’m unfamiliar with when I’m shopping at the market.

And did know they’re loaded with antioxidants that research has shown to be anti-cancerous, and they also contain iron and inflammation-reducing oleic acid? So many good reasons to incorporate them into your snacking and cooking repertoire  if you don’t already.

Next time you’re adding olives from Spain to your shopping list, some you might want to try out: hojiblanca, gordal and manzanilla. I feel like most people I know are partial to black olives, and while I do gravitate to them, I do love gordal, too; These large, fleshy green olives from Spain have a great bitter-salty balance, making them great for snacking. The same goes for manzanilla olives when it comes to snacking; they’re nice and round and plump and since its pit is easy to remove, you’ll often find them stuffed (think anchovies, peppers or cheese)—delicious! And hojiblanca? These olives from Spain have a slight fruity and nuttiness to them, which works well for stews and marinades.

Olives from Spain 2

With the versatility of olives from Spain, I started dreaming of Canadian dishes where I could incorporate them, and bannock came to mind. Let’s face it, I dream of carbs so it’s not shocking I thought of bread. I’ve never made bannock before, a bread that comes to us from our First Nations. I did a little research about it and discovered that bannock can be baked or fried, and although traditionally prepared and enjoyed quite simply, modern versions include cinnamon bannock rolls and bannock breakfast sandwiches  Light and fluffy bannock with some chopped olives from Spain warm from the frying pan sounded like it’d be the ultimate savoury treat…and it was! Here’s the recipe:

Fried Bannock with Olives from Spain

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • chopped olives from Spain to taste (I used about a ¼ cup of Hojiblancas)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup water
  • vegetable oil for frying
  1. Whisk together dry ingredients.
  2. Mix in olives (I used Hojiblancas) and olive oil, and add water, until almost combined.
  3. On a lightly floured surface, knead a handful of times but do not overwork.
  4. Divide into 6 balls and flatten with your hands. Fry at medium heat in a frying pan generously oiled on the bottom of the pan until both sides of the bread are golden brown.
  5. Drain on a paper-towel lined plate.
  6. Enjoy warm!

Given the simple ingredients and method, I’m thinking this could be a great bread to make the next time I go camping or for brunch. Although, it’s not camping I’ve got on the brain now, it’s escaping to Spain I’m dreaming of!

For more recipe ideas for olives from Spain, be sure to check out olivesfromspain.ca


1 Comment December 14, 2017

Health & Swellness tries the fishy pedi


(So it’s not exactly a nail report here, but I think a foot treatment qualifies.)

When I was vacationing in Mallorca, Spain, last month and my friend I was staying with asked if I wanted to try the Fishspa, my answer? Hellz yeah.

For years I’d been curious about this foot treatment that originates from Asia, but had never come across any spa that offered it. If you don’t know about it, basically you immerse your feet in a tank filled with toothless carp fish, which eat the dead skin off of your feet.

So we each plopped down 12 euros for 15 minutes of quality time with the fishies.

We were all howling with laughter the moment we immersed our feet — it’s crazy ticklish, but not painful. And I guess I’m particularly tasty (or have feet with lots of dead skin for the fish to snack on) as they swarmed my feet the entire time even though my girlfriend was fishspa-ing in the same tank as me.

I found myself getting squeamish watching — the fish were reminding me of insects attacking my legs (don’t they look like insects?) — so I mostly just focused on not focusing too much–thinking happy thoughts of lounging on a beach instead. I also had to move my feet every so often to get the fish to scatter a bit when the ticklishness got unbearable, even though this meant I was losing out on precious dead-skin-be-gone time with the carp.

The result? I didn’t find my feet much softer. The staff at Fishspa had recommended 30 minutes since it was my first go-round ever but I wouldn’t have been able to withstand another 15 minutes. Plus, it wasn’t exactly super cheap.

But it was more about fun times with friends, anyhow. And for that it was worth every cent and then some.

2 Comments September 16, 2011

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