Annie B’s kitchen in Vejer

Annie B’s Kitchen

It is written that ” the best way to appreciate the culture of any area is through its food and its wine”I had come Vejer and to Annie B’s kitchen to experience the Arab influence on the cuisine of Southern Spain.

Vejer de la Frontera and Annie B’s kitchen

Vejer, the home of Annie B’s kitchen , is a Moorish looking hilltop town (190 metres above sea level), in the province of Cadiz, Andalucia, perched high above the steep gorge  of the river Barbate. The town of Vejer de la Frontera occupies a low hill overlooking the Straits of Gibraltar and is surrounded by orchards and orange groves. A place of white-washed houses, Annie B’s kitchen is located in the narrow winding streets, excellent food and wine and the unspoiled beaches of the Costa de la Luz are only a 10-15 minute drive away.Its a picturesque town still retaining much of the wall around the old part of town which blends in well with the newer part. There are several ancient churches and convents, and the architecture of many of its houses recalls the period of Moorish rule, which lasted from 711 until the town was captured by Saint Ferdinand of Castille in 1248.  Many of the streets are too narrow for cars and as you walk around if you look through an open doorway you are likely to see beautiful inner patios with lots of flowers and plants. The main square is Plaza de España,  with a beautiful ceramic fountain.Many parts of the town have views to the sea and you can even see the Moroccan coast on a clear day.

Annie B’s kitchen

This is the setting for Annie B’s culinary course which was birthed out of a passion for sharing the gourmet delights of one of Los Peublos Mas Bonitos d’espana (one of the most beautiful villages in Spain) and the surrounding Andalucian area. From the kitchen of Casa Alegre we learnt fabulous new flavours, recipes, techniques and skills, all the while immersing ourselves in the Spanish way.

Annie’s enthusiasm and knowledge made each part of the course an adventure and she stealthily guided us through the local fresh produce market in pursuit of the best ingredients for our dishes. A visit to Barbati ‘s fish market was a memorable feast of smells, colour, sounds and atmosphere.

Annie’s has a relaxed yet professional manner and her knowledge of the areas history and  gourmet bounty is impressive. She freely shared her expertise on  sherry ,which is one of her passions, as well as tuna and  Jamon Iberico, amongst  many other pearls of wisdom.  Cooking in her state of the art kitchen and savouring the product on her rooftop terrace  was inspiring ! Baba ghanouj, Chorizo & pork Albondigas, Ajo Blanco,Raita, Vegetable stack, Galletas de Almendras y Limon, Chickpea salad, Moroccan spicy dip, Tortilla de Pepi, and of course Paella were among the many dishes created. Her warmth and generosity added immensely to a spectacular experience.

The best way to experience Andalusian culture is a cooking trip to Annie B’s kitchen.