Es la segunda parte! This one is jam-packed full of photographs and lots more foodie delights.
So you can’t go to Spain and not have some paella. We had a fantastic paella at Restaurante la Reja. I hate getting paella that has more shell than seafood and more bones than chicken. The type of paella where you have to search endlessly to find the best bit and your hands are filthy as you desperately try to pick out the few bits of meat within. Thankfully, this was the perfect paella. It had scallops, huge squid rings, massive flakes of cod, juicy prawns, muscles and big chunks of chicken.The rice was moist and tasty. Best of all there were lots of patches to scrape at the bottom of the paella dish where all the deliciously flavourful bits of rice were stuck to the pan.
We couldn’t resist dessert so shared the flambéed strawberries. I have never had this before. The strawberries had a caramelised crisp on the outside. The intensely sweet and warm strawberry sauce was delicious with the cold ice cream. Another night of over-indulging!
The next place to tell you about is my absolute favourite and typically we discovered it just before it was time to come home. Initially we just went to La Bodega del Pinto for drinks and when they started bringing out huge plates of amazing tapas, we thought they had come to the wrong table. Then it turned out they give you it all for free and let me tell you, it was incredible! The first night we were given deep-fried camembert on crostini with a slice of baked apple and a strawberry sauce. That was followed by individual bowls of chorizo chilli each with a little slice of bread. They were heavenly as was the sangria which laced with strawberries and lots of cinnamon.
We returned the next night (and intended to pay for the food this time). Again we were flooded with free tapas. This time it was crostini with cream cheese, tomato and anchovy and little glass pots filled with pork meatballs in a creamy sauce. They were so good. When we finally got around to ordering we shared the tapas platter which was a mixture of 9 tapas for EUR 9.60. It was served on an artist’s palette which I loved. It came with spiced rice with pork, a crispy battered prawn, a ham and cheese croquette, crostini with cream cheese and black pudding, a huge muscle with salsa, more meatballs, crayfish salad, calamari and potatas bravas. Yes, all that for EUR 9.60. We also shared some delicious bread topped with serrano ham, roasted green pimiento peppers and fried quails eggs. It was brilliant to sit outside with beautiful food and cava and watch the world go by. Again the staff were so nice. You can even see one of the lovely ladies waving in the picture above. I can’t wait to go back!
One of my favourite things about Mijas is the festivals they have in the square. Every Tuesday and Thursday there is live music and dancing. Thursday is the best night to go because they have a super-enthusiastic man (identical to Mr Motivator and dressed similarly) and woman showing you the moves and the best mojitos around. We have had so many great nights there. It is so fun and I love the fact that everyone is standing in lines following the instructors and doing all the moves. People of all ages join in. I couldn’t imagine anyone in the UK managing to break through the embarrassment and doing that here. It has such a great atmosphere and everyone is in good spirits. You have to get involved and definitely have to have the litre mojitos.
On our last night, they were holding an arab festival in the square. It was fantastic. There was so much food and lots of stalls. They had the coolest merry-go-round I have ever seen which was powered by a bicycle. When we arrived we were met with an enormous bbq filled with sausages and all sorts of meat. We had eaten at La Bodega del Pintor so were stuffed but if we had been there for just one more night, we would have definitely been back for the food. There was a grilled pizza stall, a tagine extravaganza, kebabs, delicious middle-easten sweet delights and an arabic cafe with fresh mint tea, ornate rugs and lanterns. There were stalls selling sweets, hand-crafted toys, jewellery and incense. The band stand had been decorated and you could get your photograph taken there holding an eagle, an owl or a massive python. There were even arabian dancers. It was great.
The last thing we did on our holiday was get an ice-cream from the Mayan Monkey Mijas, the world’s smallest chocolate shop and best ice cream shop. This really does justify its own post so there will be more on that later including the delightful chocolate making class we enjoyed with the lovely Eli.
So that is it for Mijas (well almost…the Mayan Monkey post and recipes are still to come). It is a great place and I really would urge you to go if you ever get the chance. For now, adios Spain. It has been magical.
In case you didn’t see part 1, here is a link here.