I Could Swim in a Sea of Horchata

My apologies for not writing on this blog of mine for so long! The truth is that I was so busy moving to my new place that I simply did not have the time. That and I was just being lazy.

My next food adventure takes me to the city of Valencia, Spain, a pretty little city on the Spanish east coast. Architecturally and culturally, Valencia is quite modern. However, it still retains its connection to the past, so full of history...But then again, all cities in Spain are like that. And in Europe. I don't know exactly why I really like this place. But I like it. Time goes by a little slower here. Things slow down a bit. The food here is divine. And there is another reason. :)

Okay. Enough about that. Now about the food.

It is my first day in Valencia. I don't even recall being hungry on this warm sunny day. But you know, I'm always in the mood for food. As an introduction to Valencian cuisine, my dear, dear friend, José (God bless him for putting up with my complaints of sore feet and countless food babies), takes me to this little cafe, which none of us can remember the name.

It's time for una merienda, and so José orders us a classic summertime snack. Horchata y fartons. First, a little pronunciation clarification. The first "h" of horchata is silent. Please do not pronounce that "h". Fartons should be "far-tohns". Not "fart-ons". And please roll the r's con la lengua.

Horchata. I've had horchata before, but it was the Mexican horchata. It was a drink that consisted of mik, rice, and cinnamon. But the one that I had in Valencia was different. It was an horchata de chufas. Tigernuts, sugar, and water. It was different. Better. Refreshing. And perfect for dipping those fartons in. But I could easily drink the horchata by itself. Better yet, I could swim in a sea of horchata, drinking it as I float around.

Fartons. A mildly sweet bread/pastry. Topped with powdered sugar. Perfect as a dipping utensil. However, future note to self: due to the elongated glass the horchata is normally served in, eat the fartons first, drink the horchata later. What I liked was that it wasn't so sweet that it overpowered the horchata. Because for me, it was all about the horchata. I will admit though, I did almost choke a few times because I kept inhaling the powdered sugar. Thank goodness José did not have to witness this.

So it was me, José, the little cafe, the horchata and the fartons. We talked, we laughed, we ate. It was the perfect end to an almost perfect afternoon, and the beginning of a wonderful trip in Valencia.