26 Sep “Cim i Tomba” in Tossa de Mar
The summer is about to finish but the weather is still warm in Barcelona. So we still have time to go to the beach and swim before we put on our jackets!
A week ago we went to the town called Tossa de Mar, a town located in Costa Brava. It is about an hour and a half north from Barcelona. It is a very touristic little town but luckily still keeps its charm. We don’t go there only for the sea and beautiful views of the castle, nor for the bronze statue of Ava Gardner (she fell in love with Tossa de Mar when she came to film Pandora & The Flying Dutchman in the 50’s). In this town there is a very dinstinctive fishmonger’s dish that we love called Cim i tomba. It is a dish created aboard the fishmonger’s boats and made with few simple cooking tools: charcoal fire, morter, and an iron pot. Aaand the sea breeze! 🙂
The ingredients used in Cim i tomba are: a white fish with a firm flesh, fish stock, sofregit (slow cook onion and tomatoes until it gets caramelized), potatoes, and allioli.
The name Cim i tomba (translated as top and turn) comes from the fact that when the potatoes and fish are cooked, you add on top of the fish the allioli, and then you start shaking the pan so the bottom part of the fish flips and goes to the top. It is a bit of a complex technique when using a pan made of clay … Traditionally they used two pans made of clay both of the same size, so they could put the empty one on top of the other and flip it; it’s kind of like when you make a spanish omelette and you need to place a dish on top of the pan to turn and cook the other side of the omelette.
After all the tomba motion, you add more allioli, and then either you cover it all with a lid and let it rest, or you can give the last touch by grilling it all in the oven to give a nice brown color to the sauce.
If you go to Tossa de Mar, you can try the cim i tomba at many different restaurants (click here for a list). When we go, we enjoy Can Carlus. The fish is very fresh and they have a great terrace in a beautiful street right along the beautiful old wall of the town.