Tuesday, July 1, 2014

This Month: Hot Spanish Nights

Seven years ago, I was deployed (yes, back in the day I was in the Navy). My ship was on a NATO mission that was all about "showing the flag" and getting other countries to join NATO, so we pulled into port more often than is typical during a deployment, hosted countless tours and receptions onboard, and participated in several multi-national exercises. I was also newly engaged, as my husband proposed mere weeks before I left. The stars all aligned though, and he was able to visit me when my ship pulled into port in Rota, Spain. It was a working port, so we were not granted much liberty, but since I'd been in a Navy school right before we departed and unable to take leave (vacation time), my Commanding Officer allowed me to take leave while the rest of the crew worked. My then-fiance and I had a wonderful time, touring Seville, attending a bullfight, devouring tapas, and chugging gallons upon gallons of sangria. At our wedding reception, we opted to skip the sit-down dinner and instead have a cocktail party on steroids, with stations of various hors d'oeuvres. The idea was that each station would boast food that was symbolic to us. One of the stations was tapas, in honor of that trip while we were engaged, our first of many adventures! And so, this month celebrating the anniversary of that time, I'll share with you my favorite Spanish dishes. Bonus: two are South Beach Diet recipes! Salud!

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