Pablo, Mama, Papa...Barcelona

Living close to one of the most exiting cities in the world is great and amazing, but you know how it is living somewhere where others goes to vacation. We are hardly finding any time to go out to the city to do all the things people do when they visit Barcelona.... So after living here for couple of years, without finding time to see more of  the "Barcelona sightseeing places" my husband and I made a promise... that no matter what at least once in a month we will go to Barcelona for sightseeing purposes only....we call it "cultural city excursion". Usually we would visit some famous places Barcelona is know for, we would go to museum, visit yet another park or neighborhood or go for a tapas tour around the city.

Last weekend we had an amazing weather and we spontaneously decided to visit Park Güell. It was some years now we have been there, so the choice was easy. As soon as the choice was made, I decided to make a small "cake picnic" there, I love picnics in any form, and having a picnic in such a nice location is quite extraordinary and amazing.

The cake I have been choosing was a "Pastel de basque", a cake coming from Basque country, which is very suitable for any picnic occasions. This cake can be done with jam and / or pastry cream, depending on what you like and how quick you would like to do it. I once read that someone called this cake "a giant cookie filled with jam" and I could not agree more. It has a texture of a cake and the taste of a vanilla cookie, with jammy surprise inside.The case looks quite modest from outside, but it does hide some surprises....believe me.

Pastel de basque (Gateau basque)

  • 225 g flour
  • 125 g sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 0,5 teaspoon of baking powder
  • zest of a lemon
  • 1 egg
  • 125 g butter cold
  • 3-5 tablespoons of jam
  • egg yolk
  • powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 180C. On your working surface sift together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Add lemon zest, egg and butter (cut in small cubes) and made a processed everything to a ball of dough (with your hands). Wrap the dough in a plastic foil and let is rest for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator. 
Grease your baking form, take 2/3 of the dough and roll it out on a floured surface to a circle bit bigger then the form, to have an edge. Put the dough circle into the form and press the edge bit against the form. Spread the jam, roll additional smaller circle and put it over the jam mixture. Press the dough crust gently together, to get it stick to each other. Brush the top with the egg yolk, put some line pattern with a fork and bake 30-35 minutes, till golden brown. Let is cool and decorate with some powdered sugar

After the picnic we went for a small walk through the park, admiring all the nice things the park is offering. I heard that Gaudi, who build this park for people from Barcelona, was building this park in the first place for all the couples who are in love and you can feel it around you. It is somehow special and quite different, the view over Barcelona is breath taking and you have many hidden corners and benches to rest and cuddle with you loved one.

And if you are lucky you will find a Spanish Guitar player around the next corner and will just fall into this magical feeling (similar to Vicky in "Vicky, Christina Barcelona") sitting at the bench, enjoying the sun, forgetting about the time, telling yourself how lucky you are. I have to admit that Spanish Guitar has a special effect at me too...I could sit there for ever, far far away with my mind, feeling myself transferred in different times, imaging how many people where sitting at this exactly spot, having same happy feeling as I do.


P.S. that evening we actually looked at Vicky Christina Barcelona....somehow these 2 guitar players, made the trick :-)