Jun 4, 2012
VEGAN IN SEGOVIA + LA GRANJA
ok... so as i may have previously mentioned, spain is not so well suited to the vegan diner; with its love of jamon (which i have been told on many occasions should be the exception to my veganism), traditional tortilla (made with egg and fried potato), and what i was to discover is the famous dish of segovia - cochinillo (a whole baby pig that has been splayed out on a platter after being roasted in an oven with a varitety of herbs and/or spices).
unfortunately this has meant that getting a good hot meal - minus any queso (cheese), huevo (egg), leche (milk) or atun (tuna) - is near impossible in your standard bar or restaurant. i have, however, been lucky enough to live with an understanding and educated bunch of spanish (oh and french, portuguese and italian) housemates who have been very helpful in spotting the non-vegan items on the menu, or asking waitstaff the necessary questions on my behalf.
thankfully - out of respect to my veganism - during my day trip to segovia we passed on any restaruants advertising the famous baby pig dish when chosing a place for lunch. instead we picked a quaint bar with a variety of non-vegan tapas and a few easily modifiable ensalada (salad) or baguette options. with the help of my travelling companions i enjoyed a fresh mixed salad with a spanish bar flair - consisting of sweet corn, white asparagus, lettuce, tomato, beetroot and grated carrot from a jar. i have come to view this as a great effort on the part of the bar owners, who generally possess little understanding of why someone would not want atun in their salad or any other of the animal-source tapas that are so popular with their diners.
la granja was surprisingly a little more confronting for the ethical vegan, as our visit coincided with a medieval festival featuring large grills laden with meat and very little in the way of vegan fare. being a lover of bread (to my detriment) meant that i got by fine without much else to eat - alas, this is the plight of the vegan traveller on occassions, and keeping this in mind it always proves wise to have a couple of b.y.o vegan goodies stashed to tide you over til your next vegan-friendly meal!
all-in-all, segovia and la granja delivered tranditional spain - with its roman and jewish influences, aquaducts, castles and cathedrals. a nice day out in the country side of spain