Stockholm- A Culture Capital

Stockholm- A Culture Capital
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St. Augustine

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Chocolate for Breakfast!

Well it was not my first time tasting this delicacy but it wasn’t until now that I have dove head first into it- Gobbling up two doses a day upon arrival in Madrid. Churros con Chocolate are a Spanish treat that are enjoyed for breakfast, after midnight, or just about anytime. A churro, most often seen stateside covered with cinnamon and sugar is a long, thin, ridged pastry that could be compared with a giant edible rope. It is deep-fried and chopped into manageable ‘straws’, which are then served up with a thick, hot drinking chocolate (like pudding).

Churros first began after the Portuguese sailed to China during the Ming Dynasty. In China they learned new culinary techniques for working with dough. The Chinese had a secret art of dough pulling that could not be shared under protection of death. However the Portuguese used the dough and instead pushed it out through a star shaped nozzle which resulted in the prismatic ridged churros seen today all over Spanish-speaking countries today.

I tested a few different venues for my devilish addiction such as the modern CH&CH but ended up frequenting the time-tested Chocolateria San Gines. First opened in 1894 San Gines is a favorite of locals and tourists alike. Every visit I made was accompanied by teeming hordes of chocolate-hungry patrons. We were served by seasoned waiters in white chef jackets who navigate the restaurant with a small fortress of triple-stacked mugs and spiky churro plates hoisted shoulder-height on trays. Watching them dance through the restaurant was like seeing an artist on stage. I think most would agree that the best part is being able to eat chocolate for breakfast and everyone else thinking that it’s normal.

So the next time you are in Spain make the effort to find this great Chocolate house and indulge in something age-old and supremely satisfying.

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