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Calentita - Friday 15th June 2012 at 8.00pm at Casemates Square

calentita In the Jubilee Year

Calentita is now in its 6th year and continues to go from strength to strength. In this, the year of Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee, it is not surprising that Calentita 2012 reflects a decidedly British theme. With plenty of stalls featuring the Best of British – from traditional British pies and miniature fish and chips to the quintessential taste of a British summer – strawberries and cream - there will be plenty of treats to look forward to. British fare will be complimented by new and exciting stalls offering tastes from newer and smaller communities in Gibraltar and from the far-flung reaches of our planet– Filipino,

Malaysian and others. Joined by the traditional favourites, Moroccan, Indian, Gibraltarian, and together with all of the other stalls returning for another year, we are looking forward to the best Calentita yet.

This year we have added a number of features which we think will improve the event for everybody that attends. We have added a second stage which will feature jazz, acoustic samba as well spoken word and poetry performances. There will be a fine arts and crafts area. The second stage and fine arts and crafts will be located in Market Place together with some additional seating and tables. Not only will this add an exciting new dimension to Calentita – it will also expand the street party outside the confines of Casemates Square which, together with other measures we are implementing, will greatly improve circulation in the Square itself. Inside the Square, apart from the many stalls serving up food, you can expect to enjoy dance performances, amazing fireworks and the carnival of a Brazilian Batucada band. The annual Calentita competition also returns with a fantastic prize for first place.

This year we will continue to develop the environmental aspects of Calentita – printing this newspaper locally and on recycled paper, increasing recycling on the night to include waste food, and making sure that the small amount of left over food is distributed to places that can make use of it. To reduce waste we’re asking you to bring your own plates and cutlery (and perhaps win a prize in the process). Calentita is, and is intended to be, a positive expression of our Gibraltarian identity. We come together to rub shoulders, share food and celebrate the best of Gibraltarian values - tolerance, understanding, diversity. We leave with a renewed vigour for them and all things Gibraltarian. I hope you have a very enjoyable Calentita. Owen Smith, Word of Mouth (Organisers)

Calentita - Friday 15th June 2012 at 8.00pm at Casemates Square


Opinion Smoked Red Herrings Page 4 Fishy Business Page 6 Calentita and Gibraltarian Identity What to Eat at Calentita

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Pages 12 and 13

Performances Page 14 Competitions Page 15 Where Coffee and Culture Collide Page 17 Three Generations of Lunches Page 18 Page 2

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

It’s time for the Calentita Party! Dear Reader,

Once again the summer is upon us and with it our now famous Calentita Night. It has become a popular annual event with this 2012 festival bigger and better than ever. Calentita has gone from a mere food fiesta to a major cultural event in our local calendar fulfilling the new Government’s manifesto commitment. Since it was organised for the first time in 2007 this event has gone from strength to strength, with this the 2012 festival bigger and better than ever. It has gone from a mere food fiesta to a major cultural event in our local calendar. This food festival has now become a street party where locals and visitors to Gibraltar of all ages can get together and have a great time.

Under the Calentita Night banner we show the world what Gibraltarians are all about. Our traditional values recognised from far a field by all

who have visited us are demonstrated. Our family values, our religious diversity and tolerance, the mixing of different races are all galvanised in this event. This invented tradition, which is very much a work in progress, preserves, encourages and builds on traditional Gibraltarian values.

Long may Calentita Night continue so that future generations can be educated in our unique way of life much envied by others.

Thanks must go to the very hard working organisers who can always count on this Government’s support. Thanks must also go to the participants and to the public who as always turn up in such big numbers. Steven Linares Minister for Culture

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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opinion Smoked Red Herrings by Dominique Searle

For a start the food will taste better, that is, if smoking is banned in local restaurants. Qualify that, good food will taste better…. Calentita chief (chef?), Owen Smith, posed the question about the likely impact of the new laws due in September and asked me to share my thoughts. I admit I have only ever puffed one cigarette and detested it. But perhaps that was because, at the tender of age of 13, I picked up a taste for panatelas and, for a brief, roman-

ticist period, carried a variety of pipes with me too. The aroma – only cigarettes ‘smell’ – of Balkan Sobraine is still evocative and though I have rarely smoked at all over the past 30 years, the winey oak zest of the raw pipe tobacco still smells good. For some years I smoked one good cigar a year. That was at the Rock hotel when Joe Gaggero held an annual Christmas lunch for the press. But cigars only smell good to other cigar smokers. They conjure those wonderful images instilled by the

adverts of exotic Cuban women rolling them on their thighs. God knows what caught in between the leaves! My lungs told me years ago that smoking, even if you like it, is the chest equivalent of slurping a bowl of lard…not good for you. And in the case of tobacco the worst thing is it’s not good for others. Start spreading the news…. It was visits to the United Nations in the 1990s that really put it all in perspective. What has the United Nations got to do with it?

Well, one of the most onerous tasks faced by an editor covering Spain’s aggressions and our bold calls for self-determination, is to file my story as quickly as possible and drop down some 30 floors - in a lift of course grab a yellow cab to the Village Vanguard jazz club. Jazz is of course a major theme – by the way, get ready for the Gibraltar Jazz Festival soon! Like Hollywood, one of the great jazz clichés was smoke filled clubs. Herman Leonard’s photography oozes it and even if you

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don’t know who Lester Young or Dexter Gordon are, you will almost certainly have seen their iconic pictures filled with shadows, instruments in half-light, cool hats all illuminated by smoke. While visiting New York, I experienced the shift from smoking to non-smoking, and in particular the fact that most jazz musicians, also seeking longer, healthier lives, welcomed it even more than I. The food also improved…. it had to. We have moved on, well they have any way. Ten years ahead of anywhere else, the Big Apple had anxious looking staff sucking on cigarettes outside the building, puffing out more fumes than the cars that are fitted with catalytic converters. One thing seems true. If you get used to a smoke-free environment you become more sensitive to smoke. No point in bribing the dog not to bark, your partner can smell you a mile off after even the shortest odysseys into a smokefilled pub. I recently sat outside at Café Solo and moved in where it is smoke free, irritated by the strategically placed smokers in the open air. Another mystery. Even smokers, when unarmed, can’t take other smokers for long. Would you have a meal in the grubby smokers’ room at Gatwick? Not really. ‘No smoking’ in restaurants will be difficult for some, especially when it comes to the sobremesa and coffee. But it will be really good for everyone else and may help cut the habit. New York, for a while at least, had quite elegant cigar bars attached to their restaurants which allowed limited smoking and it would be even better if they limited their own smoking. But I am not so hardcore anti as to deprive smokers their hardcore democratic choice, so long as they don’t share it. My job often gets me invited for lunch, I prefer well-ventilated and non-smoking (note: good fresh fish too). One fine local restaurant has attractive but unfortunate architecture –it holds the air still as glass. The last time I ate there I watched the smoke from another diner’s cigarette very, very slowly snake its way towards me. As the vanguard of that grey-white line turned into a dragon’s claw and swooped down to my throat…. that was the last time I ate there.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

oat To a good start by Rob Lomax

When you see it in little bowls in international coffee chains and conversation turns to whether it’s best made on the hob or in the microwave, or whether you favour it hot or cold - you know that porridge is back! Oatmeal has been around for yonks but in recent years has lost out to cold, cardboard tasting cereals in colourful packaging of fun promising toys and treats. But before this revival, porridge was an austerity food, associated with prisons and workhouses. It was the focus for Dickens’, “Please, Sir... I want some more” in Oliver Twist. An offense for which the workhouse Governors wanted Oliver to hang. Imagine that – hanged for wanting more porridge! Goldilocks also caused a furore in the Bear household for trying Papa Bear’s and Mama Bear’s porridge and finishing Baby Bear’s porridge which was, “Just right.”

Historically, the Ancient Greeks and Romans found the grain inedible and dubbed it ‘barbarians’ food’ and fed it to their animals.

Samuel Johnson subsequently mocked it as, “a grain which in England is given to horses but in Scotland supports the people.” Apparently he only said this to annoy the Scots. Porridge is associated with cold winter mornings where cupping bowl in hand, you feel its warmth spread through your hibernationbroken body.

It is one of the most spirit-lifting ways to start the day, a huge hug in a bowl. Nowadays we can cook our porridge oats in 3 microwavable minutes. No longer do we need to remain stove-side, spurtle in hand, stirring in a sunrise direction, for 20-30 minutes until each pearly grain releases its sweet starch. I mean, who has 30 free minutes to stir porridge before work on a school day?!

In our recessionary world, porridge is a cheap and easy breakfast. Here are five further reasons why you should take the oat oath and switch your breakfast to these wholesome whole grains: Oats boast an impressive nutritional profile: high in fibre they help protect our bodies from any number of potential health problems. They are also packed full of minerals and vitamins which support healthy bones. Oats fill you up: only 147 calories per cup of plain cooked oats. When you eat porridge, your body will digest and absorb it slowly. Porridge therefore provides long-lasting energy and keeps you feeling full, controlling your appetite and keeping hunger pangs at bay. If you’re trying to lose weight, oats can satisfy your hunger and help you avoid overeating. Oats may help reduce cholesterol: yielding a high proportion of soluble fibre, they create a gel-like fibre which transits your intestinal tract, helping to trap substances associated with high blood cholesterol. Oats are diabetes friendly: In the same way that fibre in oats helps to stave off hunger, it also helps to steady the glucose levels in the bloodstream.

Oats support healthy digestion: the insoluble fibre in oats scrubs through the intestines, moving food along and helping to prevent constipation. So next time you go shopping for breakfast, why not give porridge a try and get your day oat to a good start!

coffe e by Idan Greenberg

A word that means many things to many people: short black and strong enough to give you a morning kick, or sweet and thick enough to stand your spoon in, or even a teaspoon of dried powder with hot water from the kettle. As a coffee vendor myself (some would say ‘pusher’), I have the privilege of observing how coffee is consumed as an early morning energy booster, to fuel a mid morning business meeting, to liven up an afternoon chat and as a digestive to help that piece of cheesecake go down. Coffee is more than just a drink, it’s an occasion.

According to many sources, coffee was first discovered by Kaldi, the ninth century Ethiopian goat herder who noticed that, when his flock nibbled on the bright red berries of a certain bush, they became more energetic and started to jump around. The two main sources of coffee today are the plants Coffea Arabica (commonly known as Arabica coffee) and the Coffea canephora, also known as “Rubusta.” The seeds are roasted to varying degrees, depending on the desired flavour. They are then ground and brewed to create coffee. Coffee can be classified according to whether it is a blend, single origin or pure Arabica or a mix of Arabica and Rubusta. So for example, the coffee called “Mocha Sidamo” is the Mocha bean from the region of Sidamo in Ethiopia. It is a type of Arabica coffee that means it grows higher on the mountains. Famous brands such as Illy, or Lavazza will be a blend of various beans from various sources.

On the high street, coffee is mainly from an Espresso machine. A shot of Espresso (notice there is no “x”) is approximately 1 fl oz of coffee. Espresso drinks start with either a single or a double shot and then various amounts of milk and/or hot water are added to make the desired drink. A quick search on Wikipedia for the word “espresso” shows an endless list of espresso-based drinks and these include “cafe con leche” and “manchado” as well as “cortado”, “cappuccino” and “cafe late”. Here in Gibraltar there is no shortage of coffee shops – and there are as many opinions as to who is the best as there are coffee drinkers. For a start, there is the historic Sacarellos, who still roast their own coffee. The traditional sound of frothing milk can also be heard all day at the long-established Star Bar on Parliament Lane and the cafe at the market. For a more modern approach to coffee, there is Cafe Fresco in Ocean Village. And you can find me at Verdi Verdi in Casemate’s Square. How do you like yours?

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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Fishy Business by Jonathan Scott

David Bowie famously sung, ‘Planet Earth is blue and there’s nothing I can do’. The first part is certainly true. When you see photos taken from space, the continents are dwarfed by the oceans surrounding them. Scientists tell us the rolling of the sea across the planet creates over half our oxygen. Without the oceans, life on Earth cannot exist.

But, despite their importance, we are damaging the oceans on a scale that is unimaginable to most people. Marine species are driven towards extinction and ocean habitats destroyed. Stripped of their diversity, ocean ecosystems are losing their inherent resilience.   Probably the biggest single threat to marine ecosystems today is overfishing. Our appetite for fish drives giant ships with state-of-the-art equipment that can pinpoint schools of fish quickly and accurately. The ships are fitted out like giant floating factories - containing fish processing and packing plants, huge freezing systems, and powerful engines to drag enormous fishing gear through the ocean. The fish don’t stand a chance! In Europe, 88% of fish stocks are considered depleted, fully or overexploited, or recovering from overexploitation. (source: European Commission) Today’s industrialised fishing practices exceed nature’s ability to replenish the ocean’s fish stocks. As larger fish are wiped out, the next smaller fish species are targeted and so on. Scientists tell us we need to fish more responsibly, but regulation of the fishing industry is rotten.

By the European Commission’s own admission, in the case of 88% of European stocks “overfishing is so serious that more fish would be caught if there was less fishing.” Almost 20% of stocks are in such a bad state that scientists advise that there should be no fishing at

Want to eat fish sustainably? Look for these logos in your local supermarket all.

Spain has a terrible track record. She’s the EU’s most dominant fishing nation and is also one of the most politically powerful in terms of influencing fisheries decisions. The Spanish government has encouraged the development of excessive and destructive fishing practices such as bottom trawling and longlining. It has supported illegal ‘pirate’ fishing through fishing subsidies, and seems unwilling or unable to effectively prosecute Spanish companies who fish illegally.   Spain’s government oversees a fishing industry that: • Controls the largest fishing fleet in the EU - a quarter of the EU total, more than twice the size of the entire UK fleet, which is the second largest fleet in the EU.

• Receives almost 50% of the EU’s fisheries subsidies, almost 10 times more than the subsidies that the UK receives.

• Uses around a quarter of its subsidies to grow and modernise its fleet, which in terms of vessel construction is three times more than all other countries combined. Includes a number of notorious (pirate) fishing vessels, some of which fish in prohibited areas, hide catch information and target protected fish species. • Operates some of the largest and most powerful

vessels in the world. If you were to line up all Spanish fishing vessels, bow to stern, they would stretch for a distance of 123 kilometres. Contrast that worrying picture with the impact on the oceans of Gibraltar’s fishing practices. The Rock’s fishing community doesn’t use nets (which, as we all now know, are banned by the Nature Protection Act). From land and from small fishing boats, they use the traditional fishing rod & line. We have some very knowledgeable fishermen, who know exactly where to fish, what bait to use and what weather patterns favour different spots. But their catches will only ever consist of a small number of fish. Our spear-gun fishermen swim underwater, powered by their lungs and flippers, and can shoot some impressively large fish. But they only ever catch a handful. These local practices are sustainable and do not threaten our seas in the same way commercial fishing does.

However, most Gibraltarians are also consumers of fish. And our choice of what to eat today has a bearing on what might be available for our children to eat tomorrow - David, there is something you can do. When you dine out, ask where the fish has come from. By browsing websites like and you can choose fish that are not endangered and have been fished carefully. When doing your weekly shop, look out for certification (MSC and similar) that tells you the company you’re buying off is aware of the oceans’ problems and is trying to be responsible. Scientists are warning that overfishing results in profound changes in our oceans, perhaps changing them forever. If this isn’t curtailed, our dinner plates could also change forever, meaning fish and chips could become a rare and expensive delicacy.

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

55o years by Tristan Cano

2012 is the 550th anniversary of the 8th Siege of Gibraltar, which marked the end of the Moorish occupation of the Rock. Attempts to wrest Gibraltar from Moorish hands had been as regular in the preceding years as they were farcical in their execution. One can’t help but feel an overriding sense of commiseration for the particularly sorry attempt made by Henry, Second Count of Niebla and the grandson of Guzman El Bueno (hero of Tarifa) in 1436. Henry had been feeling increasingly frustrated by the regular attacks of Barbary Corsairs based in Gibraltar and gathered together a small force to attack the Rock. Leaving his son Juan Alonso blockading the isthmus, he personally led an amphibious landing in the area known as the Red Sands, close to where the Alameda Housing Estate now stands. Unfortunately for him, he was unaware that the City’s southern defensive walls had been significantly strengthened and were therefore unscalable. As the tide began to rise, he and his troops found themselves trapped and were forced to make a hasty retreat. In the melee that ensued, Henry’s boat sunk and he and forty of his knights lost their lives.   The Moors added salt to the wounds by hoisting Henry’s dismembered remains onto the City walls. This two finger salute was intended not only as a warning for future invaders but served as a poignant aide memoire of de Guzman’s failure. The so-called Seventh Siege of Gibraltar was over not with its intended ‘bang’, but with a prompt and rather dishonourable whimper. But

little did Gibraltar’s Moorish occupants know that their time on the Rock was numbered as Juan Alonso vowed to one day avenge his father’s disgrace. And so we move forward to August 1462… Acting on information that Gibraltar was poorly guarded at the time, the military governor of Tarifa Alonso de Arcos sent a small force to the Rock. Realising that the intelligence was correct, word was sent to feudal lords living nearby: the Ponce de Leon family and the de Guzmans led by Juan Alonso, now the Duke of Medina Sidonia. As reinforcements started to arrive, an initial attack was made. Although the Moorish garrison resisted, their losses proved too numerous and within two days offered to surrender the city providing they were offered safe passage to Granada.   The circus that ensued was catastrophic, worthy of an Abbot and Costello routine. Alonso de Arcos did not himself have authority to accept the surrender so deferred until a more senior noble was on the scene. However when Rodrigo Ponce de Leon arrived he was similarly unwilling to commit until his father the Count of Arcos had his word on this matter. With all this ‘umming’ and ‘ahhing’ taking place, the knights of Jerez, who had recently joined the fray, began secret negotiations with the Moors and accepted the City’s surrender in their name. Just as the Jerez knights entered the town, Rodrigo sped

past them and raised his standard over the town. The Moors withdrew to the Castle and again Rodrigo failed to take the initiative, opting to wait for daddy’s arrival before completing the capture of Gibraltar. Unfortunately for him, it was the Duke of Medina Sidonia who turned up next and despite promises that no action would be taken until the Count of Arcos arrived, he also offered to accept the Moorish surrender behind Rodrigo’s back. Eventually Arcos arrived and a simultaneous plan of entry was formulated ensuring that both families would be equally involved in reclaiming Gibraltar from the infidel. Again the Ponce de Leones were double-crossed and the Duke took possession of the Castle in the name of the de Guzmans.   The Second Count of Niebla was finally given a proper burial in a specially built chapel in the Castle, but the de Guzman’s time in Gibraltar was to be short-lived. Just four months later and as a result of the petitions of the Ponce de Leon family, Henry IV of Castille bestowed a charter upon the town proclaiming himself ‘King of Gibraltar’. Gibraltar flourished in the years to come as its area was extended to cover much of the hinterland and special privileges were given to people choosing to settle there. The British would not arrive in Gibraltar for another 242 years and it was during this period that the kingdom known as modern day Spain was to develop.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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Getting your children to eat their five-a-day by Marlene Hassan Nahon

Do children have their own tastes in food? Or are their decisions and choices a product of our influences upon them?

As a mother, I have often wondered whether or not what my children is a direct consequence of what I have steered them to enjoy. When babies start to taste foods, they generally relish their carrots and potatoes. From there, they move on to protein, and before we know it, they are sitting at the table devouring a steak and chips, or a full fat breakfast! Surely, as parents we must bear responsibility for what they are minded to choose as a ‘tasty meal’ in their later years. When packing my children’s school or picnic lunches, they always ask for a sandwich and something sweet. They are simply not tempted by the possibility of a fibrous option or vegetable - apart from avocado, which ironically is completely non-viable for the purposes of a packed lunch! I have to accept that had I conditioned the kids in a more healthy eating manner, they may, today, be more ‘turned on’ by the prospect of a chopped green pepper or sliced tomato!

I have learnt, in fairness, that there are ways of incorporating these fresh reds and greens into their lunchbox the secret, I believe, is consistency. Children need to see

that chopped fruit and vegetables are provided easily and regularly for them and ‘on a silver platter’. As opposed to a chocolate, biscuit, or a packet of crisps, which only demand unwrapping, cut up fruit and veg require more work before they are deemed ready to eat. Therefore, if as a rule the fridge were to be continuously stocked with chopped fruit and greens, neatly packed in tupperware containers for example, children might find it easier to help themselves regularly and have nutritious snacks. ‘Hiding’ vegetables in kids’ food was a huge US trend thanks to Jessica Seinfeld’s cookbooks for healthy eat-

ing. But in my humble opinion, this modus operandi does little to teach our children the joys of openly incorporating fruit and vegetables in their daily diet. Having said this, vegetables are not the sole symbol of healthy eating. Curtailing other eating habits is just as vital. For example, children should be brought up with the knowledge that red meat can bear severe repercussions on their general health if consumed too often. Steaks, burgers, minced meat of any sort, and in particular beef sausages, must be kept to a minimum. Currently, the suggested recommendation by medical authorities is one red meat meal a week. Alternatives like chicken and fish are far healthier and beneficial for anyone, especially the growing child. Fish is rich in omega oils, enhancing brain development and memory.

Making a concerted effort to provide our future generation with meals and snacks that are simultaneously healthy and tasty is paramount in order to ensure a new eating pattern. But this takes more than simply the way parents pack the lunchbox. Children do not want to be ‘the only ones’ tucking into their crudites and chicken, whilst their friends sit with their burger and fries! That would never work. Au contraire, they will resent us for it! For this new incentive to be implemented en masse, a new mindset has to emerge. We all have to do our bit.

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

pinchitos by Tyson Lee Holmes

World Heritage Status? The Gorham’s Cave complex has been put forward for World Heritage status nomination by the UK. Four sites came forward, with Gorham’s Cave chosen ahead of Chatham

Docks and the Lake District. Research in Gorham’s cave suggests the Gibraltar Neanderthals who lived there might have been the very last of their kind.

Photo C/O Clive Finlayson, Museum Director Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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“I WAS BORN BRITISH AND I WANT TO DIE BRITISH” reads the placard outside Momy Levy’s office. This truly proud Brit has dedicated his life to promoting and honouring Britain and our right as Gibraltarians to celebrate and cherish our British status.

He lobbied tirelessly to be able to erect a huge banner to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. “Being British is a part of me. I AM British! I was priveleged enough to be born in Gibraltar and wouldn’t change my nationality for anything in the world... And Britain without the Queen would not be Britain!”

“I am proud because Britain has always been a top nation compared to any other in the world... Winston Churchill saved us from tyranny and to know he was British makes me even prouder to be British myself. The man is a pillar of Britain and I am proud to bear the same nationality as him... If I wasn’t Jewish, I’d ask the Pope to canonize him!” “We have the best of both worlds; we are British, but our temperament is more Latin because of the proximity of

Gib to Spain... We enjoy Latin culture, but never forgetting that we are British first and foremost.”

Only last week, in a taxi in Madrid on his way to a zarzuela, Momy was asked by the driver where he was from,

and on answering “de Gibraltar” the driver predictably replied, “Gibraltar Espanol!” Momy wasn’t happy, “Listen here! Us Jews are still waiting for the Messiah, and even when he comes Gibraltar will still be British! God bless and Save the Queen for many more years to come!”

opinion Calentita and Gibraltarian Identity by Dennis Beiso

There can be no doubt that “Calentita” has become an established, perhaps even central, part of Gibraltar’s social and cultural calendar. The success of the event lies in no small part on its emphasis on issues which are directly related to our identity as a people and as a community.

Gibraltar has, of course, come a long, long way from the 18th and 19th centuries and the first arrivals of different groups and nationalities on our shores. For many Gibraltarians, however, an association with the homeland of their ancestors remains an important part of identity and self-awareness. Even today, many of those Gibraltarians with Maltese surnames often visit Malta, seeking out long-lost relatives or in the hope of “touching base” with the old ancestral home. Likewise, those with Portuguese names travel to Portugal whilst the Genoese pass up no opportunity to cruise along the Ligurian coast in search of the obscure Italian towns and villages from where ancestors once departed westward bound for Gibraltar. It is these connections and links which “Calentita”, in a fun, enjoyable way, brings home. But “Calentita” does more than just give you an opportunity to sample the culinary delights from the places ancient Gibraltarians called home. At a time when, across Europe, many communities struggle with the notion and reality of cultural diversity, and co-existence sadly gives way to ethnic tension and mutual suspicion, “Calentita” is an unashamed celebration of that essence of Gibraltarianness – diversity.

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The reasons for the diversity inherent in the Gibraltarian “ethnic” make-up are well-documented. A thriving commercial port at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries, a point of great strategic interest throughout its history, a safe haven and shelter from the trials and tribulations of war, hunger and poverty across Mediterranean Europe and beyond, a wonderful place to work and raise a family – all these factors have made Gibraltar an attractive place to come to and eventually a good place in which to settle and lay down firm roots.

That diversity is no less significant, and no less important, to Gibraltarian identity today. Indeed, diversity is a key component of modern Gibraltarian identity. There is no such thing as an “ethnic Gibraltarian” – Gibraltarians come from a variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds and the modern Gibraltarian is happy to celebrate that heterogeneity without any fear that his or her identity is being diluted or that his or her status as a Gibraltarian is any less valid. In sharp contrast to the arguments used in so many parts of the world, diversity in Gibraltar STRENGTHENS and REAFFIRMS identity. Diversity is a cause for celebration, not consternation. As much as it is a celebration of the Gibraltarians of yesteryear, the “Calentita” festival is a celebration of the Gibraltarians of today. And it is a celebration carried out in the most fitting and traditional of ways: great food, wonderful company, amazing atmosphere. So embrace “Calentita”. Embrace the essence of being Gibraltarian. Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

Putting the art in

party by Elena Scialtiel

The Gibraltar Art Gallery in Cannon Lane recently hosted a collective art exhibition, ‘Freedom... Art Is’. It formed part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and was the brainchild of Jane Langdon, who said when she thought of Britain, the first thing that came to mind was ‘freedom’. On display was artwork by local artists of the calibre of Christian Hook, Ambrose Avellano, Paul Cosquieri, Leslie Gaduzo, Gino Sanguinetti, Alan Perez, Bill White, Shane Dalmedo, Michele Stagnetto, and silvery jewellery designs by David Bentata and Angie Risso. The stars of the show were indeed Bathsheba Peralta’s graceful landscapes and affordable prints on glossy boards, and Jane Langdon’s inventive creations, both on canvas and on fabric, in her new range of clothing and fashion accessories printed with her signature expressionist roses, as recently presented at Gibraltar’s first Fashion Week.

Fashion Week’s organiser and designer Reene Weston was in attendance too and so were the girls who modelled for Jane and Reene. They were presented with photos from the catwalk. In fact,

the vernissage was quite a glamorous affair, with a veritable who’s who mingling over a glass of wine and admiring the buoyant talent Gibraltar is blessed with.

Styles varied from realism to abstract, and subject matters from traditional Gibraltar landscapes to still natures and fine portraiture. From Cosqui’s trademark north face of the Rock in patriotic colours, to Christian Hook’s contemporary Europa Point view in black lacquer on slate-grey background (signed Hoook, yes, with a triple O!), Gibraltar’s natural and architectural beauty unarguably is the main inspiration for Gibraltarian artists.

Yet, other geographical and historical landmarks have captured their imagination, from the eternal gondolas of Venice to the wailing wall of Jerusalem, religiously depicted in its sorrowful quiet of meditation and prayer by up-and-coming Israeli artist Leora Menahem. Large and small, the paintings on display cater for all styles of home and office décor, and the prices for all pockets. The Gallery is open Monday to Friday, 12 to 6pm.

Spring Art Exhibition

The 2012 Gibraltar Spring Art Exhibition graced the Casemates Exhibition Vaults in May. 123 entries by 74 local artists were submitted, with Jane Langdon winning the top prize with “My Heart” (pic above). Alan Perez scooped 2nd Prize with “Her Majesty’s Beacon”. Third prize was taken by Christian Hook with “Requiem”. The Solomon Levy Award for Best Diamond Jubilee Theme also went to Christian Hook for his piece “The Queen”. The Alwani Foundation Prize for the Best Gibraltar Theme was won by Alan Perez with “Our Gibraltar”.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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Wednesday 13th June 2012

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PERFORMANcES on the night

Main Stage (Casemates Square) 20.30 hrs – Dance Performance Urban Dance 21.00 hrs - Rock Fusion Belly Dancers 21.30 hrs – Dance Performance Urban Dance 22.30 hrs – Fireworks Display 22:45 hrs – Brazilian Batucada Carnival Band Art In Movement

Second Stage (Market Place) 20.00 hrs – Jazz Band 21.00 hrs – Poetry Recital - Gabriel Moreno 21.30 hrs – Poetry Recital – Jonathan Teuma 22.00 hrs – Poetry Recital Jessica Baldachino 23.00 hrs – Acoustic Samba Band

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

food for thought Calentita!

Food, fun and yes, rubbish! When large numbers of people gather at special events, waste is inevitably generated. A food festival such as Calentita has the potential to generate large amounts of waste in the form of food scraps, soiled paper plates, cups, cans and bottles. This year, Word of Mouth (WOM) is looking to up the green credentials of the event by making a conscious effort to try and minimise the amount of waste produced. As in past years, recycling facilities will be provided for glass and cans and members of the public are encouraged to make full use of these. Biodegradable waste (food, paper) will be collected in separate bins and sent for composting.

Furthermore, WOM is asking event goers to go one step further and bring their own re-usable containers and utensils to the event. Anyone who does so should register at the information tent where they will be entered into a prize draw to win. (See Calentina Competition)

Facts about food waste

Worldwide, we throw away 1 million tonnes of food each year which is whole, unopened or untouched. If we all stop wasting food that could have been eaten, the benefit would be the equivalent of taking 1 in 5 cars off the road! There are two main reasons why we throw away good food: (1) we cook or prepare too much, or (2) we don’t use it in time.

The foods we waste the most are fresh vegetables and salad, drink, fresh fruit, and bakery items such as bread and cakes.

Ipad 2

Know your labels BEST BEFORE: These dates refer to quality rather than food safety. Foods with a ‘best before’ date should be safe to eat after the ‘best before’ date, but they may no longer be as tasty. USE-BY: These dates refer to safety. Food can be eaten up to the end of this date but not after even if it looks and smells fine. Always follow the storage instructions on packs. DISPLAY UNTIL & SELL BY: You can ignore these dates as they are for shop staff not for shoppers.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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I Prescribe Chicken Soup by Marlen Hassan Nahon

Who would have thought that in our own back yard, a 12th century Rabbi, philosopher and physician, would be the world’s first ambassador of chicken soup’s medicinal qualities?

Rabbi Moses Maimonides was born in Cordoba in 1135. ‘Rambam’ as he is also known, is considered one of the greatest Jewish philosophers, Talmudic scholars and physicians of the middle ages. His blossoming profile and eminent status afforded him the title of Court Physician to the Vizer and Sultan Saladin, and subsequently personal physician to the Egyptian Royal family. It was his book ‘On the Cause of Symptoms’ that sparked off the worldwide ‘chicken soup is medicinal’ frenzy when in it he recommended the broth of hens and other fowl to ‘neutralise body constitution.’ He further claimed that chicken soup did much to heal other conditions like asthma and leprosy. It’s no wonder the miracle brew has, in modern times, been dubbed ‘Jewish penicillin’! However, the schmaltzy broth has proved capable of bringing so much more to the table. Studies have found that certain components in the mixture have an anti-inflammatory effect, in turn diminishing cold and flu-like symptoms. It’s the production of ‘cysteine’ in the mix an amino acid that deters phlegm production and sore


1 piece carrot 1 piece celery 1 white onion 1 ‘dark’ piece of chicken - preferably leg and thigh chicken carcass 1 tblspn chicken soup mix smidgen chopped parsley 1 tblspn of salt 1 tspn of pepper water to generously cover above ingredients and fill the pot around 70% Optional - a couple of handfuls of white rice or angel hair pasta. For children’s version, alphabet pasta can be thrown into the mix instead. Method:

1) Peel and rinse the carrot, celery and white onion

throats - that is largely credited for the soup’s healing properties.

Nevertheless, each chicken soup recipe is in a bowl of its own! Chicken soups around the world are composed with their own exclusive blends of vegetables and proteins. In Central and South America, ‘La Sopa de Pollo’ consists of white potatoes, yucca root, plantain, green cabbage, and green bell pepper. In West Africa, curry powder, ginger, tomatoes, coconut milk and bananas are thrown into the pot. And in the Philippines red cabbage and elbow macaronis are the staple ingredients.

The quintessential Jewish mother however, takes her inspiration for her chicken broth recipe from the Eastern European Ashkenazi Jews who to this day are seen as the pioneers of the traditional chicken soup fusion. Being poor, they had to capitalise on their chicken to maximise their Friday night meal. The fowl itself may have been roasted to provide a main course, but a generous piece of the bird, and as much of its carcass as could be extracted, would be boiled and utilised for the stew, thus forming the basis for what would become the blueprint of chicken soup recipes around the world. Despite the variations of recipes across the board, some elements have survived as the staple ingredients for chicken soup beyond all cultures and countries for and throw the vegetables into a decent sized pot along with a washed piece of leg and thigh and its carcass 2) Cover with warm water 3) Add the tablespoon of chicken soup mix, parsley, salt and pepper 3) Put all the mixture to the boil and let simmer for 3 hours 4) When all ingredients have been boiling and cooking away, the rice or pasta can be added and the prepared matzo balls can also be tossed into the pot gently 5) Supervise the matzo balls - they must expand and float to ensure success

Matzo Balls: Ingredients:

1 onion, cut in half 2 eggs, lightly beaten 5 matzos soaked and squeezed Salt, to taste

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the last 800 years or so.

Carrots, onions, parsley, celery, salt, pepper and of course the chicken itself and its carcass are the heartbeat of any chicken broth worth its salt! It’s this very combination of vegetables and proteins tossed into the hodgepodge that makes the chowder so uniquely reparative. Vitamin A, an essential mineral required for night vision, is found in abundance in the carrots. Furthermore, the high protein content in the mixture directly contributes towards general vitality and muscle development. Not to mention the bones in the concoction which positively add to the calcium content in the brew. Matzo balls are the icing on the cake. Soaked and drained matzo (the traditional Passover substitute for bread) is blended in with raw egg and formed into delicate, fluffy dumplings. These pasty looking composites are then softly levered onto a fervently boiling and practically ready-to-serve potage, where they swiftly expand as they cook and float, whirling around in the curative casserole.

Whoever says Maimonides wasn’t a visionary is sorely mistaken and could perhaps do with a generous helping of the soup themselves!

Pepper, to taste 1 tablespoon chicken broth Method:

1) Grate onion and mildly fry in a saute pan over low heat. 2) Place the soaked and squeezed matzos with the onion into a bowl. Season with salt and pepper and mix well with the eggs. 3) Stir in, but don’t overwork batter. 4) Cover mixture and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 2 hours. 5) Shape into 2-inch balls. Drop with slotted spoon softly into chicken soup broth. 6) Bring to boil. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, covered tightly Yield: 8 balls... Enjoy!

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

Pic by Stefano Blanca Sciacaluga

sacarello’s Where Coffee and Culture Collide by Carolina Llamusi-Silbermann

I want to share with you the story of a special little place. You’re probably no stranger to gossiping in its comfy lounge, appreciating the colourful collection of art or gobbling down some tasty dishes on its wooden mezzanine – all, whilst sipping on some hand roasted coffee, straight from the shop’s heart. And that is exactly what’s helped this spot carve out a golden status for itself on the Rock. Now to the little things you might not know. Read closely and get comfortable. I’m going to take you on a rollercoaster ride of fond recollections and tales of Sacarello’s Coffee Shop.

But before we go any further, where did it all begin? The idea of roasting coffee beans on the Rock was a seed planted over a century ago by Bartholomew Sacarello. On a trip to Cadiz in 1910, Batholomew first spotted the tradition and was struck with a bolt of inspiration that led him to add the practice to his merchant business in Gibraltar. One of his grandsons and current manager of the coffee shop, Patrick Sacarello, was kind enough to satisfy my curiosity further. Patrick told me that at its peak, over 30 tons of coffee beans were flying off the shelves and into the mugs of enthusiasts every week. Waves of this success also reverberated across the border – influencing songs of praise at the Cadiz Carnival and even gracing the lips of officials in Madrid. This success also bred passion and expertise. Totally in

his element, Patrick went on to enlighten me on the art of roasting. Yes, the art of roasting. Sacarello’s prides itself on its personal method of hand roasting its little beans. This is a delicious recipe for quality coffee with a real feel for the process. Patrick also revealed the golden rules behind roasting are also about timing. The longer these little beans are roasted, the stronger their flavor and the opposite beckons a richer acidic taste. This personal approach employed by Sacarello’s is particularly special in contrast to bigger companies, which opt for mass computerised techniques instead. But what do I think is real difference? There’s a lot less heart.

And heart is something Sacarello’s Coffee Shop oozes. If you don’t taste it in the coffee, it’s likely to come round and tap you on the shoulder sooner or later. It is not only about the roasting of the beans; it’s also about the culture that goes with it too. Paintings of plantations and pickers from Guatemala and Colombia hang delightfully on the shops walls, bringing the origins of these beans into our coffee drinking experience. Many of these paintings form part of Patrick’s personal collection of art from his travels and I prodded him to spill the beans over his adventures: “Having gone there and got to know the coffee trees and the way it is cultivated – it fascinated and really motivated me.” Since then, Patrick has been hopping over the Atlantic pond every year to revisit this exotic part of the world, visit plantations and of course, catch up with

friends over freshly hand roasted coffee!

The shop has bags of history to share too. Nicely nestled between the backstreets of Irish Town and the hustle and bustle of Main Street, it has embraced its English Georgian and Northern Italian architecture like an adult clutching onto its sweetest childhood memories. With the help of architect John Langdon, the shop has remained loyal to its roots by presenting many of its historical merchant features in a bright modern way. For example, the design of the mezzanine floor is meant to hark back to when sacks of beans were hoisted up by a conveyer belt and later packed by a rainbow of ladies, Gibraltarian and Spanish. Then there’s that coffee grinder that sits in the shop like a centre museum piece. Looks can be deceiving, since Patrick revealed to me that it does in fact still work! Yet some things inevitably change over time. Instead of the shop being full of women neatly packing coffee beans, nowadays they fill the rooms with laughter and enjoying the taste of this topical drink. The history of coffee runs so deep, and passion for it travels so wide, that these golden beans have become an integral part of the Sacarello family business. Something tells me they’ll continue to share this magic with us for many more years to come.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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The Original Jamie Oliver by Jennifer Ballantine Perera

In a ‘slight’ move sideways away from a Gibraltar-based food culture, but certainly not away from Gibraltar, nor food, the focus of this piece is on the select collection held at the Garrison Library on gastronomical delights.

I was already acquainted with a number of cooking manuals such as Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management, first published in 1859/61, and the most informative On the Extravagant Use of Fuel in Cooking Operations, by Frederick Edwards (1869), also author of Our Domestic Dwelling Places: A Treatise on the Ventilation of Dwelling Houses (1870), but was less so of the small collection of books by the eminent chef Alexis Soyer (1810-1858), a Frenchman who went on to become one of the most celebrated chefs of Victorian England. Alexis left France in 1831 to join his brother Philippe, who had moved to England some years earlier and was working as a chef for the Duke of Cambridge, Adolphus Guelph. Once in England, Alexis established himself with the landed gentry and nobility and soon became a chef de cuisine of note. In 1838 he was offered the position of chef at the newly established Reform Club, where he helped design the kitchens with Charles Barry. His move to the Reform Club cemented his fame and in 1846 he published The Gastronomic Regenerator: A Simplified and Entirely New System of Cooking, with over 2,000 ‘practical’ recipes amongst which is Calf’s Head a la Constantine and Galantine d’Anguille. Also in the book is an engraving on kitchens at the Reform Club, the design of which gives us some indication of the sophistication of Soyer’s mission. Alexis seems much like

the Jaime Oliver of his day (although Jaime’s recipes seem much more straightforward) in that he sought to bring about improvements to people’s diets by introducing a far more technical approach to the preparation of food. Also at the Garrison Library are The Modern Housewife or Menagare (1849) and Soyer’s Culinary Campaign (1857), written following Alexis’ mission to the Crimea after becoming concerned with the plight of soldiers in the field. Alexis became alarmed after reading reports of the dreadful conditions in the hospitals at Scutari and Balaclava, where poor rations and conditions were leading to soldiers dying of food poisoning, malnutrition and cholera. During his time in the Crimea, Alexis worked closely with Florence Nightingale to correct the dietary and food regimes in the hospitals. He was also responsible for Soyer’s Field Stove, which the British Army was still using 120 years later. It seems quite obvious now, given Soyer’s interest in improving the conditions of soldiers in the field, why the Gibraltar Garrison Library, a library so steeped in military heritage, retains this compact yet wonderful collection on Soyer’s cookery books and manuals. All that now remains is to share some of his recipes with you. For example, and given the significance of spinach to a number of Gibraltar’s traditional dishes, the following are Soyer’s impressions on the green leaves. SPINACH: This vegetable is very light and very good for invalids. It must be washed in several waters, after having been well picked; then put a quarter of a sieve of spinach to a gallon of water and three ounces of salt,

boil for ten minutes till tender, drain and sieve, press a little with your hands to extract part of the water, chop it up fine, put in a stew pan, with a quarter pound of butter, a teaspoon of salt, half ditto of pepper, put on a fire with a drop of warm broth for a few minutes, and serve.

At that time, soldiers were given their food rations directly, where they would put metal buttons, or pieces of metal in the meat, so they could recognise their food after it had been cooked, Soyer immediately put a stop to that practice. Soyer organised that each regiment had a trained chef who’d collect all the rations and prepare food for the men (this gave birth to the Army Catering Corp., many years later) using his Soyer’s Field Stove, which could cook food in any weather conditions. He devised new diets for these regiments. The ‘Morning Chronicle’ said of Soyer, “That he saved as many lives through his kitchens as Florence Nightingale did through her wards.”

Three Generations of Lunches by Richard Cartwright

The Dockyard `hooter’ goes, it’s exactly twelve noon and it’s time for lunch. Time’s up at 1 p.m. on the dot so you have to be back… pronto!

I remember how some would stay on site, especially the Spanish workers. They had brought their `costo’ or lunch with them. Many of us however, would go home in a hasty fashion, for the midday meal. My workshop was situated well into the Dockyard precinct and together with my work mate Ken, I would walk all the way up to La Calle Castillo (Lower Castle Road) and Ken, up to La Calle Comedia (Castle Street and on to Castle Ramp) for our meals. We made it in twenty minutes and lunch was waiting on the table.

Sometimes it was vegetable soup followed by stew. Or `rosto’ followed by meat and pota-toes. There was never a pattern of set meals per day of the week, so you never knew ex-actly what to expect. It could be Shepherd’s Pie or, contrastingly, potaje, artichokes, (al-kachofas – not my cup of tea), minestra or some other dish. ‘Local’ dishes were some-times accompanied by panisa, a kind of calentita with a much heavier consistency! Macorrenes con tomate, or tomato-ey or `yellow’ (saffron) rice dishes would also appear on the lunchtime table. And there was always a piece of fruit to follow – hence my love for fruit today!

`proper’ meal in the evening or vice versa. My son Marvin is a 45-year-old senior banker. For him, business lunches and dinner ap-pointments are not uncommon, so he could end up eating more `proper’ meals than we used to in the 50s and 60s. His average week includes two or three business lunches and a sandwich, filled roll or wrap on the other days. Sandwich bars and snack food takeaways are the name of the game nowadays and any number of office workers can be seen waiting their turn to be served at these outlets.

Right out the door at twenty to one and Ken would be waiting for me on the steps below. A couple of minutes to one would place us entering our Dockyard workshop. That was the routine, Monday to Friday, without fail. And we never suffered any digestive or physical disorder or sickness, despite all the rushing about. In those days – I think very few families would do both now – we would still have some-thing cooked for supper. It might be freshly cut chips, a bit of ham and an egg, or a ham/cheese omelette and chips. The stressful trend of modern day life these days means that wives or partners have to work – not least because there’s a mortgage to service – so you may have a snack at lunchtime and a

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My granddaughter Tiana is five. Lunch is provided for her in school. Chicken or tuna and rice, sausage and mash accompanied by broccoli, peas or carrots, a yogurt and an apple (or another piece of fruit) will see her through her school day. I think kids’ favourite, `chicken nuggets’ should, ideally, be discouraged! During break time, she opens her bag for a biscuit snack and a nutritional fruit juice or a bottle of mineral water. Evening cooked meals, I imagine, are dependent on what the days’ eating arrangements have been.

Life’s `modern day’ obligations and pressures have certainly brought with them a change in lunchtime eating trends and for most of us in Gib, `calamares rellenos’ or `potaje de coles’ on the midday, lunch table are a thing of the past! Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

Local photographers, homemade food

Photo by Eric Rowbottom

Photo by David M Parody Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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Living to Eat

lose their credibility when you see just how unhealthy the Michelin man himself actually looks? This might just be how I deal with the humiliation of contrasting my own lame efforts in the kitchen with the sumptuous creations I see on TV. But I do struggle to see the appeal of ‘designer-dishes’ that list pomegranate vinaigrette as an essential ingredient, or desserts that can seemingly only be served amidst a cloud of dry ice.

by Paul Grant

If there is one thing I’m not, it’s a food-snob. Sure, I appreciate high-end cuisine and have slurped oysters and scooped foie-gras with the most auspicious of food connoisseurs. But I like what I like, and for now, will never think twice about eating what I want, when I want. I care little for ‘fine dining’, food ‘etiquette’ or even (for now at least) calorific content. For me, food is to be savoured and enjoyed to its fullest, and compulsions must always be followed - even if it means shovelling down mountains of pasta and a tub of ice-cream for dinner; something which my more nutritionally-aware friends keep telling me to avoid. My relationship with food has always been uncomplicated, and driven by quite primitive desire. As a child, I never gave much thought to the formalities of sitting round the dinner table. Food-to-mouth-to-stomach was all that mattered to me, and knives and forks would just delay the process of self-satisfaction. In fact I became such a messy eater, my mum once suggested I have my dinner in the bath so I could wash myself straight after.

So it annoys me how the world has betrayed its natural instincts and desire for food, and become so obsessed with kilojoules, celery sticks, Kate Moss diet-plans, and meals that can only be seen with a microscope against the sea of white on the plate underneath. I imagine it must feel wonderfully self-indulgent to sit in a swanky restaurant and order a plate of seared sesame crusted tuna, horseradish mousse, organic peppery rocket and watercress salad. Yet the reality of the miniscule portion that follows will, more often than not, send you spiralling into instant depression and compel you to order another two bottles of Dom Perignon just to soften the blow. All of which leaves you not just out of pocket, but famished and desperate for a kebab and chips on the way home afterwards.

Is it really all worth it?

Even on television, our senses and stomachs are bombarded by an entire raft of cookery programs starring an array of celebrities, chefs and celebrity chefs serving up complex dishes which most of us either a) have never heard of before or b) would never be able to replicate anyway. Many of them have earned Michelin stars, and assemble all sorts of original, weird and fanciful dishes on prime-time TV shows that cause you to look down on your homemade lasagne with pure embarrassment. Yet don’t you think all Michelin-starred establishments

Wider Church Relationships

St Andrews Gibraltar instigated the formation of the GIBRALTAR INTERFAITH GROUP aproximately 6 years ago. The group is a now a registered charity. Our Minister at that time was Rev Stewart Lamont who also acted as chairman of the group. Stewart left Gibraltar in 2008. His place as chairman was taken over Levi Attias and now by Bill Smith of St Andrews Church. Meetings at that time were held in St Andrews Church on a regular basis throughout the year with a break during the summer months. The venue has now been changed to the John Macintosh Halls. The reason for the change in venue was the fact that a venue in neutral ground may attract a larger group of people of different faiths.

The motto of the group is “respect and understanding” and topics are chosen before each meeting which form the basis for discussion. The meetings are attended by all faiths including the following; Jewish, Presbyterian, Catholic, Muslim, Buddist, Bahia and other beliefs. For example we have talked on subjects such as: Dress code for the Jewish faith and there meaning or significance; The attitude to death of each religion; marriage ceremonies in different faiths; How can we achieve respect and understanding in a multi faith community? and; What form should religious education in schools take in a multi faith community? These are all questions where we seek common ground. As we enjoy each other’s traditional foods perhaps we

I am a self-confessed carnivore, and have a compulsion for sugar that’s led many to question my masculinity. Too many times have I held up family and friends at restaurants to satisfy my burning desire for a Tiramisu or Crème Caramel. That said I’m also open-minded and won’t knock anyone for their dietary foibles and preferences – I have many myself! So while ‘designer cuisine’ might be beyond me, I do still appreciate the value of healthy eating as long as it’s enjoyable, and I have a great respect for vegetarians. I admire them for resisting the urge to eat meat, on ethical grounds or otherwise, and am quietly envious of their steeliness and resolve. Unfortunately, part of me just doesn’t quite ‘get it’, nor do I think my body can abandon its propensity for junk food in favour of a ‘healthier option’ overnight. It is in Vogue nowadays; go to London and you’ll see swarms of veggies at minimalist-looking salad bars ordering pints of lettuce and cucumber chasers. Unfortunately, the last time I tried this myself, I could feel myself losing weight even as I ate; my digestive system struggling to come to terms with the tidal wave of fibre being forced down it.

Food presents us with choices every day, and if you live to eat like I do, it is a daily pleasure that should never be abandoned. Liz Hurley might swear by a strict diet of carrot sticks and houmous to keep her looking trim and youthful, but I know the same would never make me happy. Enjoy Calentita, and for one night at least, be sure to indulge!!

Gibraltar Interfaith

Respect and Understanding can also start to understand and through understanding respect for each other’s religions from whatever faith or believe. In a small community such as Gibraltar we are fortunate to enjoy a high level of respect and understanding of each other from whatever background or believe. Our aim is to encourage and maintain this by encouraging closer contact with each other. Meetings are advertised on Radio Gibraltar and GBC television, and all are welcome. Meetings are informal on a “get to know you” basis. It’s a get together for a chat and a cup of tea and some discussion. Bill Smith. Chairman

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

japonesas and Milojas

by Marlene Hassan Nahon

To this day, I believe there is only one outlet in Gibraltar which bakes its daily bread from scratch and that is ‘JJB Amar’s Bakery’. Dating back as early as 1820, Amar’s opened its patisserie on Main Street, just beside where Topshop is today, followed some twenty years later by a bakery in 1840. I recently chatted to Sarah Benzimra, who explained how it was her paternal great grandmother who founded both enterprises prior to her marrying. Her maiden surname was ‘Amar’ and once spoused, she took on her husband’s initials ‘JJB’ -Jacob Benzimra, and thus merged it into the name of the business. Sarah maintains that the heyday of fresh baked bread was when their premises were located in what used to be the site of the ‘Ye Olde Rock’ pub on John Mackintosh Square. This modest spot housed her family business from around 1900 up until 1969. She told me that a wood and carbon fire baked, to this day, the tastiest bread in the history of their venture:

“The place we had in Mackintosh Square was literally ‘desk-wide’, where we would serve the customers, and the oven was directly behind it. In the winter it was heaven, but in the summer, standing there with the direct heat of the street emerging towards us whilst the oven burned behind us... it was unbearable”. Amar’s sense of customer service was visionary from the outset. In the 1960s and prior to the frontier closure, the Amar’s delivery man would do the rounds in houses and estates. On finding plastic bags hung on doorknobs with the correct change, he would know what the order was and directly swap the coins for the bread, ready for the consumer to collect in his/her plastic bag. Sarah fondly reminisces how safe and simple things were in

those days, without the need for telephones or fear of theft: “It was a simple and direct transaction”. In other estates, their ‘bread man’ would drive around shouting, “Panadero!” and people would descend and line up to secure their daily bread.

But that is not all she remembers. Amar’s also doubled up in the early to mid twentieth century as a Sabbath oven for those members of the Jewish community who didn’t have one of their own. Sarah remembers her Friday afternoons in the early 1960s, sitting by the oven, ready and waiting to receive the typical Sabbath stews known as ‘Adafina’. Adafina is an all-encompassing meal comprising of beef, chickpeas, onions, sausages, potatoes, garlic and rice. It was born out of the Sabbath cooking restrictions. All ingredients are thrown into the pot, and in turn placed in the oven, ‘forgotten about’ and slow-cooked from the Friday afternoon up until the Saturday lunch hour. “One small pot cost an old threepence, a medium pot cost an old sixpence and a large one a schilling. At 12.45 on Saturday afternoon, one of our employees would come in and extract the pots from the oven. Then each customer’s housekeeper would arrive and collect their casseroles, taking them back home, warm and ready for lunch.”

Amar’s real bestseller, however, and the one piece that has stood the test of time, is undoubtedly the legendary ‘Japonesa’. Despite the fact that the original Japonesa is not technically the oblong one we know and love today, but a semi-circular version, our cherished Japanese lady is as old as Amar’s itself! Furthermore, Sarah assured me that although she has been spotted in the last century or so in Southern Spain, the bronze, sugar-coated beauty is a true Gibraltarian phenomenon! When probed on the secret recipe, Sarah although as sweet as the cake itself,

was certainly nowhere near as soft as the squishy celebrity. She refused to reveal even a jot of the formula that makes this piece so tasty! All she divulged was that they are “fried and filled with crème pattisiere” which, by the way, unlike the typical ‘crème’, has an exclusive Amar’s recipe of its own. She also confirmed that the jam version and the doughnut were progressive variants of the initial prodigy.

Sarah did not want to disrespect the humble miloja, which despite seeming like the poor brother in this scenario, is apparently as popular and sought-after as the Asian-named Llanita herself! Looking back on the ‘Caleta Caseta’ summers, Sarah remembers how their white van would pull up by the beachfront and see queues of hot, barefooted and toasted Gibraltarians of all ages lining up patiently for the two alternatives which were equally in demand. “They would sell in the hundreds, and people wanted Milojas and Japonesas, or Japonesas and Milojas” she recounts. Only four years ago, the bakery and patisserie were sold to Amram and Kelly Cohen. Kelly is the daughter of our very own Momi Levy, and so the baton has now been passed onto this young couple to continue the tradition. Changes in the business are visible and welcome. Amar’s has opened another branch opposite the Convent, where they’ve incorporated a cafe-style eatery, serving casual lunches and in the summer evening meals, as well as cakes. Sarah Benzimra has put my mind at ease that all the legendary secrets have been safely passed on to the new generation of owners and Gibraltar can rest assured that our Milojas and Japonesas are in safe hands!

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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The Whimsical Islanders’ Combo Platter

have long avoided knowing, while their homeland faces oil prospecting and a tormented awakening of ethical and ethnical conscience.

by Elena Scialtiel

There’s a new dish in local writer Mary Chiappe’s varied menu. Taking a sabbatical from her murder mystery duets with Dr Sam Benady, she delivers a fresh novel about a make-believe archipelago off the Portuguese coast, As Areias, which shares with Gibraltar nothing but linguistic code-switching, self-determination afflatus and some architectural landmarks.

This book is a work of fiction, but its issues are real indeed. The destiny of a small nation in the making is explored with detachment, irony and a subtle empathetic undertone, through the crises and epiphanies of a crosssection of its population.

It is also about the darkness that lies beneath: the metaphor is often reinforced by describing real things that lurk below the surface, from the antiquated sewers to the manta that glides under Guy’s sailing boat.

The plot revolves around colonists and natives alike: a bored newcomer ADC to the Governor who sees the islands as an imperial Disneyworld, a retired English Anglican spinster living the dream of her status-quo life, two sexually charged siblings with a penchant for selfdestructive behaviour, their bigot widowed mother and their workaholic nurse cousin. The title “Mosaic of an Unquiet Time” aptly mirrors the composite nature of this conservative and hierarchic society, far away from the motherland’s social winds of change and yet battered by the religious and political cross winds of colonial emancipation and Second Vatican Council that shockingly and suddenly put the sleepy islands’ future in discussion.

‘I had no desire to write about Gibraltar per se’, Mary says. But she wanted a colonial scenario to describe the birth of national identity and the dichotomy between Brits and locals. So she took inspiration from Gibraltar as much as other semi-autonomous insular administrations like the Channel and the Balearic Islands. And she wanted to write about radical change, that’s why she picked 1963, when Catholic consciences were secularising and European colonial empires crumbling apart.

This is however just the background to the protagonists’ personal dramas, when they’re forced to face what they

“Mosaic of an Unquiet Time”, with cover art by Clive Lavagna, is available at local bookshops at £9.99.

The Rock in Fiction by Christina Cortes

in my hair like the Andalusian girls used” … and of “the sea the sea crimson sometimes like fire and the glorious sunsets and the figtrees in the Alameda gardens”.

Countless lives have flowed through the Strait of Gibraltar, and where there are people, there will always be stories. Inevitably, many of those fictions and mythologies have caught too on our Rock. There are already excellent studies of Gibraltar in literature, and a host of home-grown writers: this article just looks at the Rock’s most famous faces in world fiction.

Gibraltar has had another recent incarnation: as a tax haven, in the late Stieg Larsson’s blockbuster Millennium trilogy. In the third novel, heroine Lisbeth Salander checks in at the Rock Hotel. Salander likes Gibraltar and thinks it’s a place “not like anywhere else”. She also believes Spain’s sovereignty claim invalidated by its possession of Ceuta. Unfortunately, Gibraltar’s also the site of “P.O. Box companies”, where Salander keeps her dubiously acquired money. Overall, though, Gib is portrayed affectionately, with enough attention to detail that you can be sure Larsson himself visited the Rock.

The geographic location of Gibraltar has always caught the imagination. Greek mythology holds that the Rock is one of the Pillars of Herakles (Hercules to the Romans): the gates to the unknown, and near the site of one of the hero’s twelve labours. Meanwhile, while the route of Homer’s The Odyssey is a matter of scholarly speculation, Dante Alighieri’s fourteenth-century Divine Comedy meets Ulysses in the Inferno, aka Hell, after his final voyage beyond the Pillars. Fast-forward many centuries later, with the Atlantic crossed many a time and Gibraltar now a busy military port. Patrick O’Brian’s hugely popular maritime series, set during the Napoleonic Wars, features Gibraltar on several occasions. The first novel, Master and Commander, has its hero Captain Jack Aubrey stop here a while: on one trip up the Rock, an ape throws something unpleasant at him, “quite unprovoked”. On another page, another defining feature: “a hint of Levanter began to breathe from the east”. The most famous fictional Gibraltarian makes her ap-

pearance in one of the great works of world literature, again taking its inspiration from classical mythology. Ulysses is James Joyce’s reinterpretation of the Odyssey as a one-day trek around Dublin, in a multitude of literary styles. Most celebrated is its final monologue by the protagonist Leopold Bloom’s wife, Molly, who grew up in colonial Gib. She speaks of “Gibraltar as a girl where I was a Flower of the mountain yes when I put the rose

These are perhaps Gibraltar’s best-known cameos in literature, but far from all. There’s Jane Austen’s Persuasion, whose naval Captain Wentworth too served here – only to appear himself in Mary Chiappe and Sam Benady’s local Inspector Bresciano mystery, The Murder in Whirligig Lane! Arthur C. Clarke’s Foundations of Paradise has protagonist Vannevar Morgan, who’s constructed a “Gibraltar Bridge” across the Strait. And there are many more, from Mills and Boon romances to war yarns, from novels and novellas to mere mentions, where a narrative has moved through the town or Strait just as tourists and travellers do – with their own stories to tell.

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

calentheatre The State of Local Drama by Julian Felice

When was the last time you went to watch a local play? Well, if it has been a long time since you stepped into one of Gibraltar’s theatres, you may be surprised to see what is happening on the local stage. As the success of the recent Gibraltar Drama Festival proved, local drama is more active and vibrant than it has been for a long time, with a number of groups staging top quality shows on a regular basis. From Santos Productions’ Llanito comedies to Trafalgar Theatre Group’s colourful pantomimes, via GADA’s comedy farces, there is a wide variety of plays to choose from to cater for all tastes. The last few years have seen some of the best productions staged in Gibraltar in recent years. While Santos Productions’ annual Llanito plays are superbly popular, it is one of their more serious plays that has grabbed the audience’s attention. Strong, a collection of monologues about domestic violence, was a hard-hitting and brilliantly acted production that showed the provocative guts that are rare to find in a local play. Trafalgar, for their part, recently staged Crown Matrimonial at

the Ballroom of the Convent, an ideal setting for a production that featured excellent standards of acting and direction. Both these shows – and many others – have attained a high calibre from which local audiences have greatly benefited.

But theatre is not just thriving in Gibraltar’s more obvious performance venues. Bayside Drama Studio has re-emerged as an important space, with Dramatis Personae staging successful productions of comedy plays like The Coarse Acting Show, Allo Allo and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)

at the school in recent years. Youth drama is also in a healthy state, with both Santos Productions and Bayside & Westside Drama Group carrying out valuable work with Gibraltar’s future actors. The former recently staged a highly enjoyable production of Kids Rock, while the latter regularly attracts over thirty youngsters to their free weekly workshops and won the day at the recent Drama Festival, winning the award for Best Play, among others. So, yes, local drama is in good shape, and the future looks good. There is, however, still a great deal to be done. A lot of our local venues require significant refurbishment and modernising, while we in the theatre fraternity need to maintain high standards in our productions and offer a varied programme that mixes popular mainstream plays with more provocative and challenging work. But you too could play an important role in this. Next time you hear about a play taking place, why not buy a ticket and come and watch? You too may get caught up in this exciting theatrical wave.

Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

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Why you are beautiful byJessica Baldachino Always by my side, in times of joy and times of need. Never will you judge me friend, never will you turn away. Though you channel great poise and elegance, You are humble and unassuming. Wherever I go I will carry your essence, for it is pure and it is loyal When the weight of the world becomes too much to bear, I know that you will carry it with me. More than a friend, more than a soul mate, twinned spirits we walk side by side. Con una sola mirada me haces sentir algo tan potente, puede que sea amor, o algo más fuerte. Contigo viene la inspiración a mi vida, por tu manera de ser tan grandiosa y a la vez tan humilde. Tu es le centre de ma vie et de mon cœur. Je resterai à côté de toi toute ma vie. Un ami jusqu’à la fin du temps, pour toute l’éternité. You are my rock of truth, my rock of beauty and my rock of Gibraltar. And that is why you are beautiful.

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Wednesday 13th June 2012 • Calentita Press 4th Edition

The Calentita Press  

4th Edition of the Calentita Newspaper now online