Dining, Exploring, Friends

A Day in Sant Andreu de Llavaneres with Gemma

Every Monday should be as fun as ours was this week. We drove up to Sant Andreu de Llavaneres to spend the day with our friend Gemma. Gemma, you may recall from previous posts, was the celebrant who performed our renewal of vows here February 2016. When we returned for our annual vacation in September of that year, Gemma was the one who saved our dream. If it wasn’t for her we wouldn’t have been able to make this move. You can read all about it here. To say she holds a special place in our hearts would be an understatement.

Back in February she and her family came to our village for a visit. The link above will take you to that post. Over lunch, we told them about one of our favorites Catalan dishes that Bob makes weekly. Catalan Peas. Here is the recipe. Gemma then told us that we needed to visit her village as they have an annual pea festival (Festa del Pésol). We made plans to attend, however, the date was different than we originally thought and this past weekend just didn’t work for us for the new date. On to Plan B (Monday fun day) and we will attend the Festa del Pésol next year.

Llavaneres is an hour’s drive from where we live and north of Barcelona on the sea. We arrived at about 11am and had coffee on their terrace before heading out to visit some special places. Such a beautiful village.

The church where Gemma and Jordi were married.

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We stopped by this amazing bakery, Pastisseria Llavaneres, where Gemma had asked them to make us a special treat for us to take home since we missed the Festa del Pésol. Really? How special is that!? I don’t like taking food photos because to me unless you are a professional food photographer the food never looks as wonderful as it does in person. I found this photo on their Facebook page which is much better than the ones I took. Peas, onions, sausage…heaven. I will tell you that it was incredible!!

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While there we also tasted Gemma’s favorite artisan bread and took some home. Thank you, Gemma, and thank you Pastisseria Llavaneres!

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We loved their shop both the interior paint scheme and the gorgeous tile outside.

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From there we drove to the next surprise Gemma had for us. On the way, she showed us where her mother, grandmother and other relatives live. All within close proximity which keeps with the family being so important in this culture. ♥

Then the surprise! Again, because we missed the Festa del Pésol she took us to this beautiful old Masia where they still work the land and grow vegetables. There we met the owners, Carme and Francisco. Carme had a bag ready for us with fresh sweet peas that she had picked and shucked. Along with onions and garlic and a pea recipe. ♥♥

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Carme is absolutely delightful and full of life. She showed us the vast amount of pea plants they grow and graciously answered all of our questions. We stood amongst the plants and ate fresh peas from the pod. YUMMY! She told us that she had shucked 150kg (330lbs) of peas the day before. Pea festival, ya know. WOW!

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Once pea season is done this will be planted with tomatoes.

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As we walked through the gardens she offered us cauliflower and chard and cut them fresh for us.

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Then a glimpse in, what I guess is the old stable, which is now used to process the vegetables that they sell to friends and restaurants. We also saw a few rooms of the Masia. Traditional and so beautiful. Imagine the history of this home.

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We could have talked to Carme all day, she was so much fun, but we had lunch on the seafront next.

Lunch at La Caleta was scrumptious! Pica pica and then a fabulous paella. Paired with a lovely bottle of red.

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We look forward to our next visit with Gemma (and her family) at their family home in the Pyrenees this summer. Thank you, Gemma, for making us feel so welcome and so very special! ♥♥

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