Chloe Scott-Moncrieff writes from Barcelona for The Independent, March 8, 2014–The Spanish couples next to me couldn’t contain themselves as they ate. Chatting excitedly, they all wore bibs and gloves, yet there was ash strewn across their table and several had charcoaled chins. Outside the restaurant, amid plumes of smoke, five men in red berets walloped wads of the almighty calçot, unusually saporous spring onions, on to human-sized graelles (grills) with burning vines underneath. Flames leapt up. People took photos.
Heres the link to The Independent story: http://www.independent.co.uk/travel/europe/calots-in-catalonia-where-they-know-their-onions-9175984.html
And here’s one to a video of a Barcelona street party, in the Sants quarter, which nicely distills in just over two minutes the alegría of a calçotada: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nsNL5BGOJNk
A subversive secret: Do you really want to get stuck in but don’t have authentic calçots? Try it with green onions. It’s not the same but it’s great. And here’s a video from About.com with Chef John Mitzewich who will teach you to make romesco sauce. What are you waiting for?
P.S. Have you filled in the ¡Alegria! readers’ survey yet? You’re still in time to win the fine-art print of the Alhambra. Here’s a link to the survey.