Three typical Christmas Markets around Spain

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Three typical Christmas Markets around Spain

December 17, 2018

It’s Christmas in Spain and the season for Spanish traditions such as munching on turrón, Christmas lottery or heading to the best Christmas markets in Spain to do some holiday shopping.


Here are some of the most well known Christmas markets in Barcelona, Madrid and Seville to visit, that typically run from around the end of November up until early January.


Christmas markets in Spain are all about lights, sweets and nativity scenes, giant Christmas trees and the sweet smell of caramelizing almonds to the tune of festive holiday music.


Here’s our pick of the top 3 magical Christmas markets in Spain.


Fira de Santa Llúcia, Barcelona


The “Fira de Santa Llúcia” is the oldest and biggest Christmas market in Barcelona and probably the most popular in Spain. Hosted every year in front of the Barcelona Cathedral in the Gothic district, earliest records of the market date back to 1786. In recent years, Fira de Santa Llúcia has had close to 300 stalls selling souvenirs such as Nativity figures and other traditional Spanish Christmas activities for adults and children. This sweeping market is bursting with traditional Christmas food and few oddities that you’ll only find here in Catalonia. An olive snack to go and a nice group of friends to visit the market, remember it runs from 24th November to 23rd December.



Madrid’s main Christmas Market


Madrid’s main Christmas Market fills the grand Plaza Mayor since 1860 with twinkle lights, Christmas music and wonderful smells. One of the biggest in Spain, it has 104 booths, selling everything from figurines for the Nativity scenes (Belén) to handmade toys alongside fancy dress costumes and joke items ready for Día de Los Santos Inocentes – Spain’s version of April Fools’ Day – on 28th December. The market runs from November 24th until December 31st.



Artisan Christmas Market, Seville


The city of Seville goes all out with the “Artisan Christmas Market”, which runs from 15th December to 5th January in Plaza Nueva. The Spanish Christmas market is dedicated to seasonal local crafts in the characteristic Andalusian style.
Also “Feria del Belén” a Spanish Christmas market focusing only on ornaments for Belén (Nativity scenes) and Christmas trees, is one of the most visited Christmas markets in Spain of its kind where you can buy anything from Mary, Joseph and The Three Kings. Located in the historic centre, near the Cathedral it runs from November 18th to December 23rd.



The cities are filled with coloured lights, Christmas carols are playing on the TV, and in the shop windows, hundreds of gold and red ornaments highlight their products. But the time spent with family and friends are the most important Christmas tradition in Spain. Families gathered together for Christmas’ Eve and Christmas Day is the most typical Christmas scene in Spain, with olives snack of course.


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Where to go when Winter comes

December 28, 2018

Spain is the world’s third most popular destination, characterized by a great variety of places to visit, amazing food and the welcoming character of its inhabitants.


This doesn’t change during Winter. Spain has a lot to offer despite the cold weather and you will still find people enjoying an olive snack at the bar terrace. Neither cold weather or snow stops the hectic pace of this beautiful country.


From skiing in the Pyrenees to relaxing in the steam bath. The best winter escapades in Spain!


Baqueira Beret

Baqueira Beret, located in Vall d’Aran, is a destination where visitors can do diverse ski activities. However, although this famous ski station has 2,166 hectares and ski lifts with a transport capacity of 60,683 people per hour, there is much more to explore in the area.


We recommend, especially after a day of skiing, to immerse yourself in sulphurous waters in some of the facilities that are close to the springs. An excellent option is the highest SPA in Europe, called “Termas de la Baronia”. However, almost every high- end hotel includes a SPA as part of its amenities.


You can’t either miss a “Ruta de Pinchos”, a route in which the visitor can enjoy small portions of the most exquisite food in the area. The perfect opportunity to enjoy some authentic Olives from Spain!




When the first snows arrive, this area becomes a paradise for Nordic skiing lovers. This Nordic ski centre located in the border with France possesses several circuits marked for both the ride and the training.


The freedom and the high chance of observing wild fauna are the main attractions of the station.




The perfect spot, not just for skiing, but also for trekking and enjoying the best traditional Spanish food. The ski resort of “Puerto de Navacerrada” is the closest one to the capital and has become an essential place for winter sports’ lovers.


Moreover, the town of Navacerrada, in the National Park of the Sierra de Guadarrama at 1,200 meters of altitude, offers a great variety of activities for those who enjoy spending time in nature. You can take a walk along the reservoir while enjoying the water and its views, a suitable option if you travel with children.



Sierra Nevada

The ski resort of Sierra Nevada is one of the biggest attractions in Granada and of course, a great destination if you decide to visit Spain during winter. Those who enjoy ski will love it because here is where the highest peak of the Iberian Peninsula, “Pico Mulhacen” is situated, at 3,480 meters of altitude!


An escapade to Granada city is a great idea during winter to avoid the overcrowding of summer and the high prices. Everyone knows that visiting “la Alhambra” is a must regardless of the season.



Moreover, the 2nd of January this beautiful city commemorates the entrance of the Catholic Monarchs in Granada, the delivery of the city and the beginning of a new era in the History of Spain. You will be able to enjoy a typical winter dish known as “the pot of San Antón”. But Olives will also be all around!


Don’t miss the opportunity to see a more unknown part of Spain, a different experience from the typical beach and pool vacation!


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Seasoning, the best way to enjoy winter indoors

January 7, 2019

Winter time, Christmas, family, traditional cooking and good eating. A perfect summing up for this season an amazing excuse for Olives from Spain, a snack for any occasion. Let yourself be surprised by the recipes showed below:


Black olives with chocolate, extra virgin olive oil and basil

Taste: Sweet           Style: Funny      Season: Winter       Preparation time: 4 minutes


Black olives, extra virgin olive oil, milk chocolate topping and basil.


Dehydrate the olives in the oven (200º) for 4 minutes. Meanwhile, we chop the basil and mix it with olive oil. On the other hand, we grate and we reserve the milk chocolate topping aside. We remove the olives from the oven and mix them with basil oil. Let it cool and place in a container. We finish with the chocolate zest.


Tip: Enjoy with a black beer.


Best time: After lunch or dinner and before dessert.

Green olives with honey and salted anchovies

Taste: Salty       Style: Cheeky         Season: Winter        Preparation time: 3 minutes


Ingredients: Green olives from Spain, salted anchovies, rosemary honey and chives.


Cut the salted anchovies into dices and mix them with the olives. Then add the honey rosemary and chopped chives very thin. Stir well and, this is it! Easy!


Tip: if the honey is very dense add a splash of albariño.


Best time: When making a stop along the way on any trip by car.

Iberian Queen Olives

Taste: Sweet          Style: Cheeky             Season: Winter            Preparation time: 4 minutes


Ingredients: Queen olives from Spain, 25g of Iberian ham, extra virgin olive oil, 30g of tomatoes and a Granny Smith apple.


First of all, we are gonna chop the main ingredients and in a bowl, we mix the apple, cut in 1×1 cubes and the Iberian ham
in juliana. We add the olives and we water with a generous trickle of olive oil. We place it on a plate and decorate with the seeds of the tomato that we have previously extracted carefully with a spoon.


Tip: Always use Iberian ham at room temperature to appreciate all its nuances.


Best time: Ideal to snack between hours.

Queen Olives with piparrana ciezana

Ingredients: Queen olives from Spain, cod, tender onion, a chilli pepper, 3 ñoras (sweet pepper), mature tomato, extra virgin olive oil and parsley.


Elaboration: Roast the cod and crumble. On the other hand, clean and chop finely the onion. Also lightly roast the ñora and mince it. Peel the tomato and cut in small dice. Finally, chop the parsley and mix all the ingredients with the olives and let it marinate.


Tip: The ñoras can be lightly toasted in the microwave. Onion, ñora and chilli they can be processed with a chopper.


Best time: At any time of the day.

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Four Recipes to have a Good Winter

January 14, 2019

Even during winter, in Spain, you will always find people enjoying an olive snack at the bar terrace. More living outdoors is a Mediterranean rule that you should never break, but also sharing time with family and friends gathered around the table is another Mediterranean must. Enjoy a tasteful cuisine anytime with a simple option for fresh and healthy ingredients like Olives from Spain. Take a look below!


1.Roasted chicken with lemon and olives

This dish highlights the strength of Olives from Spain by pairing Manzanilla olives with baked chicken. Rich, flavorful and lasting, this recipe is rustic and fresh with hints of citrus accents.




– 4 chicken breasts

– Manzanilla olives from Spain

– Preserved lemons thinly sliced

– Lemon juice, rosemary

– Parsley leaves

– Olive oil, salt and pepper.




Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Heat a large, heavy-bottomed, sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add two tablespoons of olive oil to the pan. When hot, add the chicken breasts skin side down. Cook until skin is golden brown and the skin is crispy about 4-5 minutes.

Flip chicken breasts over, add the rosemary sprigs to the pan and place the entire pan in the oven. Cook until the chicken is just cooked through, about 10-12 minutes, or until a thermometer reads 150 degrees internally.

Remove the chicken from the pan, add the Manzanilla olives, preserved lemons, lemon juice, parsley, and about 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil to the pan, this will be the sauce.

Divide the chicken between four plates, heat the sauce over medium heat and spoon evenly over the chicken breasts.
Serve while hot and enjoy with a vegetable side such as roasted onions or carrots. Enjoy the meal!



2. Salmon with Olives from Spain

This dish gives a hearty kick to the rich and elegant taste of salmon with lentils and Queen olives.




– 4 portions of salmon

– Pitted and chopped Queen olives

– Pre-cooked lentils

– Chicken stock

– Minced shallots, carrots and leeks

– Finely diced bacon

– Minced chives

– A lemon

– Olive oil, salt and pepper.




For the Lentils:

Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a high-sided pot over medium heat. Add the bacon, shallots, carrots, and leeks. Cook until some of the fat from the bacon has rendered and the bacon is starting to get crispy.
Add the lentils and chicken stock, bring to a boil and add salt and pepper if needed.
Once seasoning is adjusted, add Queen olives and chives and keep warm until ready to serve.


For the Salmon:

Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add about 1/4 cup olive oil. When very hot, add the salmon and cook until both sides are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes per side.
Set aside on paper towels to absorb any excess oil. And finally, divide the warm lentils between four warm plates. Dinner is ready and delicious!



3.Roasted Swordfish with Manzanilla Olives


This dish highlights the strength of Olives from Spain by pairing Manzanilla olives with roasted swordfish. Rich, flavorful and lasting, this recipe is rustic and fresh with hints of citrus accents.




– 4 portions of swordfish

– Manzanilla olives from Spain

– Peeled cherry tomatoes in juice

– Capers

– Sliced garlic

– Juice of two lemons

– Parsley leaves

– Olive oil, salt and pepper




For the Sauce:
Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a high sided pot over medium heat. Peel and slice the garlic and add it to the warm oil. Then, sauté until the garlic is tender, not browned, add the tomatoes and cook until the tomato liquid is reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Add the Manzanilla olives, capers, the juice of one lemon, parsley, and salt and pepper if needed. Set aside and keep warm until the swordfish is cooked.


For the Swordfish:
Season the swordfish with salt and pepper. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add about 1/4 cup olive oil. When very hot add the swordfish and cook until both sides are golden brown, about 3-4 minutes per side. Set aside on paper towels to absorb any excess oil.
Finally just as the swordfish comes out of the sauté pan, divide the sauce between four warm dinner plates. Place one piece of fish on each plate, squeeze some lemon on each piece of fish and serve while hot. Everybody will be surprised and amazed, enjoy!



4.Sautéed runner beans with olives and sesame

A really tasty vegetarian option to please and satisfy all the pallates, combining two types of our delicious Olives from Spain, queen and black olives from Spain.




– Queen olives from Spain with peppers

– Black olives from Spain

– Bacon strips

– 400g runner beans

– Sesame seeds

– Olive oil and kecap manis sauce.


First of all, blanch the runner beans in boiling water and sauté the bacon together in the pan until golden brown. Add the tasty black olives from Spain and the previously chopped queen olives with pepper. Then, add the kecap manis sauce, still in the warm pan and stir correctly and finally add the sesame seeds. An amazing and nutritive dish to share.



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3 ways to surprise your Valentine’s Date with olives

January 28, 2019

Roasted tomatoes and Olives from Spain bruschetta


If you are one of those who doesn’t like cooking or you don’t really know how to cook properly, this is an extremely easy recipe that will still surprise your date.




– Hojiblanca Olives from Spain, chopped
– Tomatoes
– Yellow bell pepper
– Fresh basil leaves
– Soft Goat cheese
– Sea salt
– 1 baguette, sliced
– Olive oil




Preheat the grill pan for five minutes.


Cut 10 tomatoes and 1 bell pepper in half, de-seed them and add olive oil to both sides. Season with salt and pepper to taste and add them to the grill pan.


Once grilled, chop the tomatoes and bell pepper, add them to a bowl with olives, chopped basil leaves, olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.


Spread goat cheese onto the toasted baguette slices and top with the mixture. Enjoy!



Brownie with Olives from Spain


This brownie is a classic dessert with the unique touch of olives, perfect to share.




– Hojiblanca Olives from Spain
– Dark chocolate bar
– Eggs
– Butter
– Vanilla essence
– Brown sugar
– Flour
– Cocoa powder
– Pine nuts
– Salt




Put a paper towel on a plate with 150 grams of black olives on top separately and microwave for 3 minutes. Then, open the paper and remove it. Repeat the procedure until the olives lose all the liquid. After, crush them using a mortar and pestle.


Afterwards, preheat oven to 180ºC and meanwhile, melt 110 grams of butter and the chocolate bar in bain-marie, stirring often.


In a bowl beat 2 eggs and add a few drops of vanilla extract. Then add 1,5 tablespoons of brown sugar to the mixture, stir well with the rods, and add other 1,5 tablespoons of sugar. Finally, add the previously molten chocolate, 2 cups of flour, 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder, a pinch of salt and mix. Now it is time to add 50 gr of pine nuts to the dough and the dehydrated olives.


Finally, grease a large pan with olive oil and pour the mixture inside. Bake for a maximum of 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool before serving.



Spanish tortilla omelette


What a better idea that one of the most traditional Spanish dishes combined with olives? Anyone can’t resist something like that!




– Pimiento-stuffed Gordal Olives from Spain
– 5 Eggs
– 7 Medium Potatoes
– 2 Medium Onions
– Sea salt
– Olive oil




Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut both potatoes and onions into thin slices. Then, heat a frying pan with plenty of olive oil (enough to cover the potatoes) and add them along with the onions.


Remove the potatoes and onions when they start turning golden brown. Place them in a strainer to drain off the extra oil and set aside in a plate over paper towel. Meanwhile, cut the pimiento-stuffed Gordal Olives into slices. In a separate bowl beat the eggs, and then add the sliced Olives, and the potatoes. Mix well and add salt to taste.


Return the pan to the heat with two tablespoons of olive oil. Add the egg mix, olives and potatoes and turn down to low heat. To prevent the tortilla from sticking move the pan in a circular motion. Flip it with the help of a flat lid when it begins to bubble.


Once ready, place it on a plate and cut into triangular pieces.



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To feel great, start your day with a Spanish-style breakfast

February 4, 2019

Spain is well known for having a great food culture, characterized by its variety and Mediterranean influence. As expected, breakfast in the country also has something unique, difficult to find anywhere else.


Baguette toasts with grated tomato


This simple but tasty breakfast can be found in any bar or cafe around the country, but it is also eaten frequently at home. It is served with a dash of olive oil and quite often with cured ham on top. To drink you can choose between the classic espresso or a big glass of fresh orange juice. Moreover, these toasts combine perfectly with olives!



Churros with hot chocolate


Even though this is the iconic breakfast of Madrid, you can easily find it wherever the part of Spain you are in. The traditional recipe uses only flour, salt and water. However, churros are often served with sprinkled sugar and always followed by a cup of hot chocolate, so you can dip them in. This sweet breakfast has also some health benefits. For example, hot chocolate is a powerful antioxidant and the feeling it produces acts as an anxiolytic. Furthermore, it will keep you warm during winter months.



Brunch with olives


Those who don’t like to eat first thing in the morning would enjoy the most traditional Spanish brunch: a filling bocadillo with an olive snack. Around 11:00 in the morning you will find terraces and bars crowded, full of people who are taking a break from work to taste this savoury meal.



Magdalenas with hot milk or coffee


Magdalena is the Spanish version of a muffin. This pastry is something you can buy at every bakery and supermarket and is consumed first time in the morning to start the day with energy. Some prefer to eat them alone, but most people love dunking them in hot milk with cacao or in their morning latte. You will find it really difficult to eat just one!



Toast with Soria’s butter


Seems like nothing special, many people in the world likes to spread butter on their toasts. But in Soria, a region in the north of Spain, these toasts are special since the butter used has a Protected Designation of Origin certificate. Furthermore, you can find three different varieties of this butter: natural, sweet or salty.


Are you ready to start your day the Spanish way?