Barcelona, Spain – One of my favorite (and tastiest) trips was a trip I took with my granddaddy in 1993 to Barcelona, Spain. We went to see my cousin, Gregg Perkins, who was preaching in Barcelona and surrounding areas at the time. After our Trans World Airlines (TWA) flight landed in Barcelona, Cousin Gregg picked us up at the airport and took us to his apartment where we were greeted by Gregg’s wife, Georgia, their children, and my Uncle Frank and Aunt Lillian who were there on their annual visit. I recall Georgia and Aunt Lillian walking to the little bakery just a short distance away from Gregg and Georgia’s apartment. They walked up to the outside of the bakery and requested “pan” (the Spanish word for bread). Immediately, we had fresh baked, straight from the oven, authentic Spanish bread. Bread in hand, we headed back to the apartment. When we arrived, Georgia took out a thin slices meat and made sandwiches. It was delicious!
Have you ever wanted to recreate an experience? I believe we all have. For many years, I’ve wanted to make those sandwiches. I recently messaged my Cousin Georgia and asked her to think back almost 25 years ago to what that meat was that she put on that fresh Spanish bread. “Jamón serrano”, she told me. The search was on. I looked up jamón serrano online. Wikipedia read, “Jamón serrano ‘Serrano ham’, literally ‘ham from the sierra, or mountains’) is a type of dry-cured Spanish ham. A form of jamón, it is generally served in thin slices, occasionally diced.” After further research, I found that I could order it through Amazon. Of course, I placed an order and it’s on the way. While I’m waiting on that, I’m practicing my bread making skills. I found a recipe called, “Four-Hour Bagettes“, so I’m giving it a try. Cousin Georgia said, “The Spanish way to eat it is to drizzle olive oil on the bread and then cut a tomato in half and scrub it up and down the length of the bread gently smashing it as you go. THEN put the jamón serrano on it.”
Of course, that special memory with my granddaddy and family can never be recreated, but I can at least get a taste of that special memory through Spanish bread and jamón Serrano. Excuse me while I go bake some bread.