Welcome to Villa Balea
Join us on a unique winter or spring 2020 Spanish cuisine trip!
Alicante is truly the Spain’s vegetable garden and fruit orchard. The natural conditions and the mild Mediterranean climate are almost perfect conditions for a variety of crops, such as olives, wine, rice, almonds, dates, pomegranates and many other kinds of vegetables and fruits.
We will submerge ourselves in one of the most prominent Alicante ingredients – the rice, how it is grown, seasoned and cooked – including in the dish that has become the pride of every Spanish family – paella.
We did the Bon food 2018, following the path of the almond. A group of Swedish entrepreneurs in tourist industry participated, perfect days the We learned more about the almond tree and we made to the world’s best almond cake.
This year, we take on the rice, visit a rice farm and we will visit a Spanish family to see how they prepare their favorite paella. There are a variety of varieties of different rice types and rice dishes.
Most recipes start in the same way, you make a base (‘sofrito’) with onion, tomato and olive oil. Depending on whether you live on the coast or in the mountains, the shopping list for ingredients varies – artichoke, beans, peppers, rabbits, snails, octopuses and mussels are some of the possible ingredients.
An important feature of a real homemade Paella is that you “take a bit of what you have at home ” or growing your vegetable garden. Good leftovers of chicken, sausage or meat are also used, all in the sign of sustainability and no waste.
One of our excursions goes to Calasparra in the Murcia region (about 1.5 h drive south of Villa Balea) to see the DO rice grown there (the resort has been producing rice since the 1400s!) The Calasparra rice matures more slowly than other types of rice and absorbs a lot of liquid making it perfect for dishes like paella.
The Guide is Gunilla Jacobsson who lives in Dalarna, Sweden where she runs her shoe company La Gunilla y sus zapatos and the guide business Guidekullor. She has a keen food interest and has over twelve years of work experience and living in Spain (mainly in Madrid and periods in Málaga, Barcelona, Valencia and Alicante / Elche).
We live comfortably in Villa Balea, a spacious villa outside Rojales, where we share four bedrooms, four bathrooms, kitchen, living room, pool, garden and all amenities. The location is optimal for excursion. If we do not want to cook dinner at home, we have about ten minutes’ walk distance to the nearest restaurant area.
Alicante hostsfertile soils and the mild climate and many kinds of vegetables and fruits are grown. Often with several harvests per year. Spain’s restaurants have the most Michelin stars in the world, but there are also many local and everyday restaurants in Alicante with fantastic good food. We promise to show you some of our most charming bars and restaurants!
Spain has been an EU member since 1985 and has been good at taking part in the EU’s various programs in, for example, the construction of new infrastructure such as highways and highways. Spanish public and private organizations work in a clear way to promote their gastronomy and promote local food culture on different levels. They have developed sustainability thinking, resource management and offer organic, vegetarian and innovative alternatives to traditional products.
The proximity to the sea has a special attraction, in addition to fishing “sea fruits” and extracting sea salt with traditional methods, new products are developed to protect endangered species. Examples of innovations are products based on seaweed and citrus caviar.
In short, there are many reasons to study food in the Alicante area and for this trip we choose some areas and issues that are relevant to the season and the target group.