Winter’s coming (but not for long)

2 February 2017 0 Comments Category: Ali Meehan, Living in Spain

In true Game of Thrones style, our winter in Fuengirola is always threaten to be coming and in reality seen in a minor flurries, with the occasional extraordinary outburst. We see a glimpse, but rarely does it rear its head for more than a few days.

Bright blue days, set against a backdrop of palm trees move into cold star filled nights. Snow is on the mountain in the distance (we can drive to the Sierra Nevada in 2 hours from the coast) and even (for the first time in 35 years) on the Sierra de Mijas.



Rather like the British love of talking about the weather, we can now indulge in the Spanish topic of conversation and bring on the winter produce and recipes. Habitas and peas are plentiful and tasty, so have your fill of the winter’s fayre at the tapas bars, or in your own kitchen. Here’s my Mum’s winter warming Moroccan Cous Cous recipe which is super easy to make, especially if you have a slow cooker:-



2 large Cordillo de Cerdo – 2 tbsp. oil

2 medium onions (cebollas)

1 tsp turmeric (curcuma)

1 tsp cumin (comino) , coriander (cilantro) & cinnamon (canela)

½ tsp chilli powder

4 carrots (zanahorias) sliced

2 small turnips (nabos) sliced

4 small or 2 large courgettes (calabacín) sliced

Jar of chickpeas (garbanzos)



Heat oil in saucepan, brown meat, add spices & onion, stirring.  Cook for 2 mins

Add stock (1 chicken & 1 veg. cube dissolved in app. 1 pint of water.)   Bring to boil.  Simmer for 2 hrs.

Add courgettes & chickpeas – cook for further half hr.

Prepare couscous according to instructions on packet.

Place couscous on platter & cover with meat & veg. & a little of the sauce.  Serve remainder of the sauce separately.      



Food keeps us warm inside and we also need to keep warm outside. Of course we dress up (you can tell when you are becoming an INpat and are integrating when you walk down the road in a coat, boots, gloves and scarf and are met by a person from your home country and in a t-shirt and shorts!)


The Spanish have a wonderful saying – ‘Hasta el cuarenta de mayo no te quites el sayo’

'Hasta el cuarenta de mayo no te quites el sayo'-2


Which means “Until May 40th don’t take off your sack”

In truth we are normally on the beach for my birthday in mid April and I, for one, am crossing off the days!

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