A big leg off a dead pig to hang in my kitchen! Yes it’s preparation for Christmas here in Spain, the supermarkets will all be open the four Sundays of December and the Christmas trees and decorations are out in force. Christmas music is being played and some truly awful things are in the shops, like the fuzzy felt nativity scene we saw, all in luminous greens and yellows! Christmas preparations in Spain have their own unique flavours, with the supermarkets full of traditional dried fruits and marzipan, more turron than you can shake an almond tree stick at (turron is a sweet confection of crushed almonds and loads of sugar all mixed together into some sort of sticky treat – Owain had not tried it before, to the horror of one of his school mates who promptly nagged his mother to purchase some, which he brought in for our deprived boy the next day! The Spanish are very kind in so many respects.) Finally of course, the cured pig legs. I had quite a shock when I entered Carrefour to see a load of pig legs on display, and the cost....about 100 euros for some.
They always look really rustic when Jamie Oliver uses them in his recipes but as a vegetarian, they don’t really appeal to me. I do like the fact that this is not meat in disguise though...it’s not that pink ham nicely sealed in plastic wrap, all sanitised for your sandwiches and not looking at all like it ever came from a pig. No, this is the real, undisguised thing; it looks like it’s come off a pig...and not in the too far distant past either.
We won’t be getting one but Merry Christmas preparations everyone!