Fresh and fruity

From oranges to olives, sardines to salad, Spain is brimming with the freshest of ingredients to tantalise your taste buds.There’s simply no reason not to cook from scratch when you see the wide range of fresh produce here.

One lady that has caught my eye is local vegan chef Bettina Bordi of Marbella who hosts Bettina’a Kitchen. The way she uses local produce to create stunning looking dishes always amazes me and I will most certainly be attending one of her workshops this year.

The sheer size of some of the fruit is intimidating but the taste is something else. Not a lover of tomatoes at all, here they taste so different they are often a part of my salad dishes. Teaming up some fresh bread, olive olive and crushed tomato to make a breakfast tostada is the perfect combination of fresh ingredients to start your day.

Artichokes, asparagus, aubergines, courgettes, onions – there is so much choice you can be dumbfounded. Head to one of the markets for some of the best deals on your fruit and veg. The flea market in Sabinillas on Sundays is great for topping up your stocks and there are several vendors along that road selling their home grown produce.

Everything is such good value. Vendors like to sell by the kilogram and the Spanish with big families buy that much. Makes me look silly when I pick up three oranges and two onions when most people buy by the bucket load.

Always one to turn my nose up at an olive, during my time in Spain I have learnt to indulge a little when I am sitting in a beach bar having an ice cold lager. I’m certainly no olive connoisseur but give me a few more years and I could be.

Fresh fish too is abundant. I must admit I do not buy a lot of fish to cook, I’d rather eat out and have it cooked by one of the local chefs…..even if that means on one of the sardine boats by the chiringuitos.

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