Supra by Tiko Tuskadze [epub | 22,57 Mb] ISBN: 1911216163

  • Full Title: Supra: A Feast of Georgian Cooking
  • Autor: Tiko Tuskadze
  • Print Length: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Pavilion
  • Publication Date: June 1, 2018
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1911216163
  • ISBN-13: 978-1911216162
  • Download File Format | Size: epub | 22,57 Mb
Download Link



Bordered by Russia, Turkey, Azerbaijan and Armenia, and situated at a crossroads on an ancient East-West trading route, Georgia’s rich and diverse history is nowhere more evident than through its cuisine and legendary hospitality. Central and unique to the culinary tradition of Georgia is the "supra," a coming together of family and friends to share heart-warming toasts, great conversation, free-flowing drink and, most importantly, dish upon dish of mouth-watering food. In this, her first book, Tiko Tuskadze shares over 100 of the dishes that come together to make Georgian cuisine a true celebration of its country's unique climate, history, and culture. Recipes follow the authentic procession of dishes, starting with pâtés and sauces then salads, which are traditionally laid out on the table before guests arrive; moving on to sections on soups, bread and cheese, meat dishes, poultry dishes, fish dishes, vegetable dishes, and ending with a few fruity treats. The recipes range from the iconic Khachapuri (cheese bread), Kebabi (lamb kebabs) and Khinkali (dumplings), to lesser-known classics, such as Ajapsandali (aubergine stew) and Ckmeruli (poussin in garlic and walnut sauce). This book is the ultimate resource for anyone interested in discovering this unique and varied cuisine with the dual values of family and celebration firmly at its heart. Includes dual measures.


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tiko Tuskadze was born and raised in Georgia. She is the proprietor of a celebrated London-based restaurant Little Georgia, and its sister café in Hackney.



The New Vegan Cookbook

The Pressured Cook: Over 75 One-Pot Meals in Minutes

The New Soy Cookbook

Lorna Sass’ Short-Cut Vegetarian

Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure

Lorna Sass’ Complete Vegetarian Kitchen

(formerly Recipes from an Ecological Kitchen)

Cooking Under Pressure

In Search of the Perfect Meal: A Collection of the Best Food Writing of Roy Andries de Groot (selected and edited)

Christmas Feasts from History

Dinner with Tom Jones

To the Queen’s Taste: Elizabethan Feasts and Recipes

To the King’s Taste: Richard II’s Book of Feasts and Recipes

Copyright © 2006 by Lorna Sass

Photographs copyright © 2006 by David Prince

All rights reserved.

Published in the United States by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House, Inc., New York.

Clarkson N. Potter is a trademark and Potter and colophon are registered trademarks of Random House, Inc.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Sass, Lorna J.

Whole grains every day, every way / Lorna Sass.

p. cm.

Includes index.

1. Cookery (Cereals). 2. Grain. I. Title.

TX808.S27 2006

641.6’31—dc22 2006009528

Hardcover ISBN: 978-0-307-33672-9

eISBN: 978-0-7704-3535-6

Cover design by Maggie Hinders


To the memory of my brother

Philip Gary Sass


And to those who work to restore and sustain the earth



Title Page

Other Books by This Author




whole grains 101

what is a whole grain?

the health benefits of whole grains

getting started

the grain bank: whole grains as fast food

grain profiles and basic recipes




the corn family



corn on the cob



job’s tears




the rice family

brown rices

red rices

black rices

rye and triticale



the wheat family

wheat berries, Kamut, spelt


green spelt (frika, gruenkern)



wild rice

cooking whole grains in a pressure cooker

stand-alone soups and grain salads



main courses

risottos, pilafs, and polentas

stir-fries and skillet dishes

braises, stews, casseroles, and savory pies

on the side



grain and vegetable combos

polentas, grits, and griddle cakes

breakfast and brunch

pancakes and waffles

porridge, hash, and granola

desserts and baked goods

a whole-grain flour primer

quick breads

cookies and confections

crisps, pies, and a cobbler

puddings and a parfait

further reading

mail-order sources





During the past year, I’ve stood among amber waves of Kamut grain stretching toward the intense sun of Big Sandy, Montana. And I’ve wandered through pink, golden, and lavender sprays of quinoa ripening in the highland Andes of Riobamba, Ecuador.

These two experiences changed my life. Before being in those grain fields, I plucked Kamut and quinoa from the shelf of a health food store without giving it a second thought. Now I understand how hard farmers work to grow them, and how long a journey these nutritious kernels make before arriving in our kitchens. I feel grateful having such easy access because whole grains are not only nutritious, but absolutely delicious.

I imagine that for some of you, the whole-grain journey has always seemed long—perhaps interminable—because you’ve been meaning to get more wholesome food on your table but don’t know where to begin. Likely you’ve read about the health-promoting aspects of whole grains, but aren’t sure how to select or cook them. Or perhaps you’ve had enough brown rice and want to explore more exotic options like black rice from China, green spelt from Lebanon, farro from Italy, or kalijira from Bangladesh.

The choices are thrilling, and I’m here to guide you on an exciting adventure. You may be motivated to begin the trip because you know that grains are good for you. But I am confident that quite soon you will look forward to eating whole grains every day, every way because they taste good.

Happy cooking!

Lorna Sass

New York City

what is a whole grain?

A kernel of grain is comprised of three edible parts: the bran, the germ, and the endosperm. Some grains have a fourth part—the hull or husk—which is an inedible protective covering.

There are vital nutrients in each of the three edible parts. Let’s consider a grain of wheat. The bran is the outermost edible layer—actually seven paper-thin layers—that protects the kernel from insects and bacteria. The bran is a concentrated source of dietary fiber. The largest portion of the bran, the aleurone
summer grilling ideas, pastry definition, snacks, candy and candy, la cafe,
th the foam roller that things began to change in a big way. Suddenly, I was taller, slimmer, and looked and felt younger. My pain diminished and I felt so much calmer. My body became more streamlined and lithe. The muscles I had overworked relaxed, and my intrinsic (or “ballerina”) muscles started revealing themselves. Best of all, I felt better. It’s safe to say that I look way better at thirty-seven than I ever did in my twenties. And, might I add, this program allowed me to maintain all of this post-pregnancy.

Kristen and I are not alone in our results. Over the course of the past fifteen years, I have applied this same program to everyone from top pro athletes to celebrities to everyday people of all shapes and sizes. Across the board, everyone who has completed my foam rolling program has undergone a complete transformation not only physically but also mentally and emotionally. Even more than seeing clients who transform their physique, I love to watch clients use this program as a means of combating and resolving chronic pain. It’s like giving someone the gift of freedom.

I know it sounds like hocus-pocus that ten minutes per day of foam rolling can lead to such transformative results, but there’s actually a proven science to the program I’ve designed. The foam roller works in a way that nothing else on the market right now does because it targets a newly discovered organ: fascia, or connective tissue. We’re ultimately working with the fascia on the foam roller, and that’s why this technique is so innovative. We’ll delve into what fascia is and why it matters in the next chapter, but for now, suffice it to say that the science and medical communities really only came to discover fascia and its role in our physiology in the past decade—2006, to be exact. Working with fascia is still a revolutionary, cutting-edge approach to fitness, as it essentially offers a means to simply and effectively reshape the body.

I first discovered the roller more than fifteen years ago when I was working as a personal trainer at a health club in Manhattan Beach, California. As many trainers and physical therapists do, I learned how to use the roller for self-massage. I immediately loved this technique and used it with my clients from day one to warm them up before their workout program. Fast-forward to my first Pilates workshop a few years later, and I was reintroduced to the roller as a tool for mimicking many of the elongating and core-strengthening moves traditionally performed on expensive Pilates equipment. This was a breakthrough moment for me because it allowed me to empower my clients, whenever and wherever they were, with an easy way of consistently performing the Pilates moves. I couldn’t help but notice that once my Pilates clients began incorporating the roller into their routine, their bodies transformed more rapidly. A few years later, I went to school for Structural Integration and learned so much more about the body, fascia, and the anatomy of movement. This knowledge allowed me to take rolling to an entirely new level, and formed the basis of the program you’re about to embark on over the course of the next twenty-one days.

Only recently have the medical and fitness worlds discovered a little secret that I’ve understood for a long time now—that the foam roller is good for so much more than aiding in physical therapy or just working out knots and tightness. When used regularly and correctly, it can be utterly transformative and unbelievably healing. My revolutionary foam rolling program combines lengthening and toning Pilates-based exercises with self-care movements that dig into the body’s connective tissues, thus reshaping the musculature and the actual structure of the body and releasing those toxins and blockages that wreak so much havoc. The result of this is a real, healthy, balanced body that’s nurtured, loved, strong, and appreciated. Through this program you will discover the most elongated, relaxed, femininely toned, uniformly developed, and joyful version of you. You’ll understand how freeing it feels to have a body that’s aligned (lots more to come about how and why this is so important) and a sense of yourself that’s ageless and draws you into a place where your soul can really soar. The real magic bullet to this plan is that it will make you feel fantastic about yourself and develop in you a vibrancy you probably didn’t even know was possible. And once you get to that place…well, anything is possible!

Another critical difference between the program you’re about to embark on and the others you’ve probably tried before is that this one is all about taking care of yourself rather than being a slave to working out. It’s about taking a holistic, healthy approach to fitness and wellness and doing so in a manner that actually feels good. Yes, you will get fit in the process, but you will also deepen your mind-body connectio
fun cupcakes, chinese takeaway, candies shoes, vegetarian meatloaf, what is veganism,
logger, I have learned

may not be very excited about into fun shapes. Use

how important it is to keep a well-stocked kitchen to small cookie cutters and cut their fruits and veggies into save time when preparing meals. I put together a list something new and exciting. Play “What can we make

of my “must-haves” to get me through busy weekdays

out of our food?” Chances are they’ll love it.

with no stress. I recommend going through your pantry Have your kids in the kitchen with you while prepar-and tossing out the old items and getting things orga-ing meals. When they have a hand in dinner, they’ll be nized. You will feel so much better. Before you know it, proud of what they’ve done and want to eat it.

you’ll have a well-stocked kitchen you can cook from any night of the week.

6 Picky Palate Cookbook

Pantry Must-Haves

Refrigerator Must-Haves

•   An assortment of canned beans: black beans, white

•  Milk, buttermilk, heavy cream

beans, refried beans, pinto beans, chickpeas (gar-

•  Eggs

banzo beans), and a variety of dried beans

•  Unsalted butter

•   Canned diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, tomato

•  Spreadable butter

sauce, tomato paste, and a good BBQ sauce

•   An assortment of cheeses: cream cheese, Parmesan

•  Canned tuna and canned chunk chicken

cheese, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, feta

•   An assortment of rice, quinoa, couscous, and dried pasta cheese, and Gorgonzola cheese

•   Panko Japanese bread crumbs and traditional bread

•  An assortment of yogurts


•   Yellow mustard, brown mustard, ketchup, Worcester-

•  Chicken broth

shire sauce, hot sauce, and salad dressing

•  Jars of your favorite salsas

•  Bacon

•  Peanut butter, jams, and jellies

•   Carrots, celery, onions, garlic, broccoli, sweet peppers,

•  An assortment of crackers


•  Honey and maple syrup

•  Salad greens, parsley, cilantro, and fresh herbs

•  A variety of breakfast cereals

•  Apples, oranges, kiwis, lemons, and limes

•  Olive oil, vegetable oil, canola oil

•   Balsamic vinegar, rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar Freezer Must-Haves

•   Seasonings and spices: kosher salt, sea salt, black

•  Chicken breast

peppercorns, ground cumin, chili powder, garlic salt,

•  Ground beef

garlic powder, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper,

•  Shrimp

Italian seasoning, basil, thyme, rosemary, cinnamon,

•  Sausage

vanilla beans, and pure vanilla extract

•   Bread (I keep loaves on hand for sandwiches and

•   All-purpose flour, oatmeal, granulated sugar, brown garlic toast)

sugar, powdered sugar, baking soda, baking powder,

•  Pizza dough

cornstarch, cream of tartar

•   Pita bread (makes a quick pizza crust when you need

•   An assortment of chocolate chips, nuts, marshmal-a quick dinner)

lows, brownie mixes, cake mixes, and frostings

•  Pie crust

•  Puff pastry

•  Cookie dough

•  Bags of frozen vegetables

Introduction 7

Chapter 1

Rise and Shine

Recipes That Will Perk Up Breakfast and Brunch

10 Nutella-Banana-Stuffed French Toast

18 Bacon and Cheddar Florentine Quiche

11 Pesto-Parmesan Baked Eggs

21 One-Bowl Buttermilk Pancakes with

12 Maple-Bacon Muffins with Sweet Butter

Buttermilk Syrup

13 Baked Hash Brown, Bacon, and

22 California-Style Eggs Benedict

Cheddar Omelets

23 Bacon and Onion Pan-Fried Potatoes

14 English Muffin Breakfast Casserole Supreme 24 Buttery Cheddar-Garlic Biscuits

15 Apple-Spice Puff Pancake with Caramel

27 Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Bread


17 Streusel Baked French Toast

I love seeing Nutella all over my boys’ faces when we enjoy this over-the-top breakfast. Nutella is one of those spreads that is good enough to eat right out of the jar, but wait until you try it stuffed in my French toast along with bananas. Serve warm, dusted with powdered sugar, and/or drizzled with maple syrup, with a bowl of fresh fruit.

Nutella-Banana-Stuffed French Toast

4 large eggs

1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

1⁄2 cup milk

2 tablespoons packed light brown

2. Add the eggs, milk, brown sugar, and vanilla to a large bowl and whisk to combine. In batches, dip the bread in the egg mixture and add to the sugar

skillet. Cook until browned, 2 to 3 minutes, then cook on the other side 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

for 2 to 3 minutes more. Transfer to a serving plate. Spread 1 tablespoon 6 slices bread

Nutella each on 3 toasts, then top with the banana slices. Top with the 3 tablespoons Nutella

remaining 3 toasts, cut in half on a diagonal, and serve warm with the 2 medium bananas, sliced 1⁄8-inch

powdered sugar and maple syrup.


Powdered sugar, for serving

Pure maple syrup, for serving


S 6


10 Pic
gluten free food list, candy game, food facts, chicken lasagna recipe, tea strainer,
There is nothing healthy about this recipe. Sookie would be proud.

Learn more about her bakery and shop online:

Follow her on Instagram: @thirdcoastbakery

Like and follow her on Facebook:

Jessica Allbee

Artwork Contributor: Chapters 3 and 9

Location: Hudson Valley, New York

Favorite Episode: S04/E22 “Raincoats and Recipes” (where Luke & Lorelai finally kiss!)

Jessica is a lover of the ocean, music, animals, forest wandering, books, cooking, art, making people laugh, her wild family and friends, and, of course, rewatching Gilmore Girls. Contributing to this book was a wonderful way to combine several of her passions. She is thankful for those who helped her get here.

Follow her writing account on Instagram @writeowl

Reach her via LinkedIn:

Julie Arrington

Artwork Contributor: Chapters 1 and 9

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Favorite Episode: S3/E22 “Those Are Strings, Pinocchio”

Julie’s famous for quoting Gilmore Girls episodes. She’s got merch, been on the studio tour, hit up a pop-up Luke’s Diner, and still watches episodes weekly. She knew her husband was her “Luke” when he understood her Gilmore-isms (thanks to his daughter, Paige). Mutual Gilmore Girls love was how the trio bonded, and the fast-talking, quirky characters of Stars Hollow will always hold a special place in their little corner of the world.

Find Julie on Instagram: @juliearrington15

Lisa G. Larson

Writing Contributor: Marzipan

Location: Southern Utah

As a fellow fast-talking, junk food–loving, journalist-turned-writer and mom, Lisa G. Larson has loads in common with Lorelai and Rory, down to the special bonding that can only take place over family dinners. In real life Lisa loves attending the theater, enjoying the outdoors, reading, binge-watching her favorite TV shows, and spending time with her husband and three children. Her favorite foods include pasta, caramel popcorn, and anything combining chocolate and peanut butter.


Instagram: @SoUtahScene

Twitter: @LisaGLarson

Annemarie Conte

Recipe Contributor: Boston Cream Pie

Location: New Jersey

Annemarie’s Haiku:

I was Team Logan Then I did a full rewatch Maybe Team Jess now?

Annemarie Conte is a magazine editor with an awesome husband and two adorable daughters. She bakes to de-stress, so she bakes a lot. She jumped at the chance to develop this Boston Cream Pie, which is actually a cake. And it’s also her favorite flavor of donut. So that means it’s a pie that’s actually a cake that’s actually a donut—which feels so very Gilmore Girls, doesn’t it? When she’s feeling sad, she watches the “Michele has ennui” scene from “Love, Daisies and Troubadours,” and it makes her laugh until she’s not sad anymore. You should do that too.

Find her at and on Instagram @annemarieconte

Jessica Wheeler

Writing Contributor & Recipe Tester: Passion Fruit Sorbet

Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

First Episode Watched: “The Pilot”

Jessica Wheeler was born and raised in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She was honored to represent the city as Teen Miss Pittsburgh 1996. More than twenty years later, Jessica is a working mother of two with a focus on creating delicious and nutritious meals for her busy family. Her love of nutritious ingredients began when she was a little girl on her tiptoes in her mother’s and grandmothers’ kitchens. Her passion for desserts and comfort food also began in those kitchens, and Jessica continues the family traditions with her children.

To learn more about Jessica visit:

Arianna Tzounako

Recipe Contributor: Chocolate Praline Cookies

Location: Downtown Saint Petersburg

Most Watched Episode: S6/E13 “Friday Night’s Alright for Fighting”

Arianna Tzounakos is a business professional in the downtown Saint Petersburg area. Her hobbies include having cook-offs with her fiancé, baking, and spending quality time with her fur baby. Much like any Greek, Arianna insists on feeding all her family, neighbors, and friends. And now, thanks to Kristi Carlson, Arianna has the opportunity to feed fellow Gilmore Girl fans, without having to do the dishes.

Arianna’s main goal in life is to be Emily Gilmore.

You can reach her at: or Instagram @air_tzoogs


Katlyn Allenson & Teri Patzwald

Location: Central Florida

Favorite Episode: S8/E4 “A Year in the Life – Fall”

A mother/daughter baking duo back for the second book! What makes them such a good team? Teri, the mother, has every baking tool and ingredient under the sun, while Katlyn, the daughter, has a knack for adding a twist to every recipe—not to mention Teri keeps the kitchen clean and Katly
vegan clothing, mandarin restaurant, paleo diet foods, beer supplies, pani puri recipe,
e during ’51–’61, saw its almost accidental birth; Preece had personal issues with some of the numerous members of the Seppelt family, with relations souring to the point where he felt compelled to resign; O’Shea was rescued by a number of members of the McWilliam clan – the McWilliams first buying half the shares in Mount Pleasant, and ultimately the other half in the aftermath of the Great Depression. If you take a broad view, these hugely talented winemakers were incidental to their employers’ financial needs, but left in limbo for much of their careers (Schubert was brought out of retirement when the marketing gurus belatedly realised his value). There was no expectation that any one of these winemakers would have any knowledge of, let alone responsibility for, the commercial value or the financial cost of their wines. How different to the wine world of today.

Julian Langworthy is chief winemaker for the Fogarty Wine Group (FWG), the fastest growing wine business in Western Australia. He reports to the Group General Manager, and is responsible for the stylistic direction of all of the FWG wineries and their individual brands. He mentors and manages a team of 10 winemakers and, in conjunction with the Group Chief Viticulturist, is responsible for all fruit purchases – this is in addition to more than 300ha of estate vineyards spread from Hunter Valley in New South Wales to Margaret River in Western Australia.

Julian has particular responsibilities for Deep Woods, with an extensive promotional role for its profile interstate and internationally. He plays a lead role in brand planning, providing wine business acumen and general support for the marketing team. He has broad-based human resources responsibilities, including coordination for all site compliance issues, and others too many to mention.

Are his winemaking skills and palate on par with the greats of the 20th century? It’s a question without an answer. But if he is to be compared with the best of today, the answer is an emphatic yes. His wine show successes (and the team he has led) have gold medals flying around the room like confetti, with trophies (including the biggest of all, the Jimmy Watson) equally plentiful. And most of all, he is universally admired and liked by all who have had contact with him and/or the great wines he makes.

Previous ‘Winemaker of the Year’ recipients were Robert Diletti (2015), Peter Fraser (2016), Sarah Crowe (2017) and Paul Hotker (2018).

Wine of the year

Duke’s Vineyard Magpie Hill Reserve Riesling 2017

Selling their successful clothing manufacturing business in Perth didn’t leave Hilde and Ian (Duke) Ransom wondering what they would do next. Hilde is an artist of some note, so her views were of prime importance. Duke’s vision was even more focused – he says, ‘I have drunk wine for 60 years, good wine for 40 years and very good wine for 20 years’, and goes on to explain, ‘I took Hilde for some long drives in the Australian countryside, mostly wine regions.’ They wended their way through South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and Canberra, finally slowing down as they reached the Western Australia’s Great Southern region. Having looked at more than 50 properties, they bought the tranquil Magpie Hill Farm.

They set about creating a large dam, but – despite the Department of Agriculture and Food having given it a glowing report – the dam builder and a local water guru agreed the property could never catch or hold water. A week later the property was back on the market. Duke went for a drive to clear his mind and saw a for sale sign being erected on a site 2km down the road. Duke drove into the beautiful property and made an offer, which was soon accepted.

Time has shown that Duke’s belief the vineyard would be ideal for riesling (‘Our wine of choice and the wine of the region.’) was correct. Rob Diletti (of Castle Rock) makes the wines with infinite skill and sensitivity. Duke and Hilde have the Duke’s Vineyard Magpie Hill property on the market at the time of going to print, and have purchased a 2-acre block on the water’s edge in Albany. I wish them well for their second-time-around retirement, and warn the local fish that there are two strangers in town.

I leave you with excerpts from the 11 tasting notes covering the 2006–17 vintages. ‘A celebration of the purity, elegance, drive, and length of a wine … that will outlive your patience’ (’17); ‘Its blossom-filled bouquet a short introduction to a wine that takes the palate in an instant and refuses to let go … its array of lemon and lime flavours remorselessly building intensity from start to finish’ (’15);‘Exceptional clarity, purity and intensity, a long exciting life ahead; lime, apple and mineral characters coalesce on the palate and aftertaste’ (’10).

Previous ‘Wine of the Year’ recipients are Bass Phillip Reserve Pinot Noir
ook walks down to the beach for the smoked paella and bay scallops at Kaiku—at the edge of Barceloneta, a few steps from the Mediterranean.

With every day came memories of a place I wanted to make my own years earlier: the early-morning light against the palm trees and arches of the Plaça Reial; the skateboarders—the world’s best—attacking the smooth ledges and stone gaps of the modern art museum; the old men in Speedos playing petanca at the beach, their skin like overcooked hot dogs; the way Catalans wish the entire bar a good day as they come and go.

Whatever tide of doubt and confusion that came pouring out of me days earlier on the steps of Girona suddenly seemed very far away. Why start from scratch—language, friends, local knowledge—when I had roots in Barcelona? Why chase an Italian when you can give yourself to a Catalan?

I traded my temporary apartment in for a long-term rental and unpacked my bag.

Every great ancient city needs a powerful origin story; Barcelona’s starts with Hercules. Four hundred years before the founding of Rome, on the hunt for the Golden Fleece with Jason and the Argonauts, our hero loses one of his nine ships to the rough seas and begins a desperate search to recover it. He finds it washed up on the shores of Catalunya, and Hercules and his crew are so taken by the area’s beauty that they build a city and name it after the ninth ship: Barca Nona.

In truth, the Romans built Barcelona, at least the first lasting iteration of it. They called it Barcino, a seat of governance for the Iberian outpost of the empire—not big enough to merit a coliseum or an amphitheater like Tarragona to the south, but important enough to construct a two-mile defense wall to protect the five thousand or so inhabitants living in Barcino by the second century.

In the thousand years after the fall of the Roman empire, Barcelona became a revolving door for the forces that stirred across Western Europe: Jewish settlers seeking a place beyond persecution, Visigoths in search of a seat for their volatile empire, Muslim forces looking to extend their growing presence in Iberia. The golden age of Barcelona came in the early part of the fourteenth century, when deep coffers and naval dominance gave the Catalans control over most of the Mediterranean: first they took Sicily, later Constantinople, Athens, Corsica, Sardinia, and Naples. While trade, banking, and art flourished, the master builders of the fourteenth century constructed the stone core of Barcelona that still stands today, and the sense of a national Catalan identity began to take shape. As Colm Tóibín, the Irish author who has lived on and off in the city for years, observes in Homage to Barcelona : “This feeling that as intellectuals, humanists, inventors, writers, and entrepreneurs they had risen above Spain would never leave Catalan consciousness.”

By the time Cristóbal Colón returned to Catalunya in 1493 to announce to Ferdinand and Isabella his discovery of a New World passage, Barcelona had already lost much of its wealth and prominence around the Mediterranean. The statue commemorating the Italian explorer at the base of La Rambla today is marked by two historical curiosities: the first being that he stands pointing southeast across the sea, away from America; the second that the statue celebrates the very voyage that was a deathblow to the Mediterranean trade routes that gave Barcelona its importance.

For the next two centuries, Catalunya struggled to retain its autonomy amid the rising power in central Spain. On September 11, 1714, after withstanding fifteen months of a punishing siege by the forces of Philip V, the Catalans lost the War of the Spanish Succession and officially became a part of Spain. This wasn’t just a political annexation, but a systematic dismantling of Catalan culture: books were burned, classrooms shuttered, and churches remade as all signs of Catalan language and heritage were banned from the region. September 11 remains Catalunya’s national day, when flags and firecrackers and the words of “Els Segadors,” the national anthem, fill the streets: “Triumphant Catalunya will once again become rich and full.”

First light on the backstreets of the Gothic Quarter.

Matt Goulding

By the beginning of the twentieth century, those words came to life in the streets of the Gothic Quarter as a new wave of Catalan nationalism took hold in the city. After two decades of political turbulence among the anarchists, communists, and conservatives vying for power, two radical figures, Francesc Macià and Lluís Companys, swept the 1932 elections on a platform of national pride and promptly made Catalan the official language of the new government. A resurgence of Catalan art and literature took hold across the region, but the high times were short-lived. Fascism was afoot across Europe, and General Francisco Franco was on the march from his exile in the Canary Islands.

At the da


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *