Mortero and Lebrillo
One can find some interesting and inexpensive kitchen utensils here. For many years the yellow earthenware mortar with painted green splotches and a wooden pestle has been used in Spanish kitchens. Called a MORTERO in Spanish, the pestle is a PILÓN or MAZA. And matching them is the old fashioned mixing bowl, the LEBRILLO. This useful bowl is now also found in antique shops, having been used just as often for hand washing the laundry as for mixing bread. But I have seen these bowls still for sale in shops which deal in typical artesan ceramics and earthenware.
When I lived in Ibiza and Mallorca, I remember seeing those mortars used as ashtrays in some bars and cafes.
The groove for pouring out the sauce, was used to hold a burning cigarette!
Well I use mine quite regularly, but for mashing garlic with flat-leaf parsley and salt, to make the beginnings of a sauce. And the lebrillo....well it sits on top of a shelf as a decoration from yesteryear, as I now prefer a lightweight plastic or glass mixing bowl in my kitchen.
The typical yellow earthenware is also seen used for garlic pots as well as soup bowls:
Canary Chicken Soup...always topped with a mint leaf (hierbabuena)
Another curious object, with a very modest price is this cutting board for slicing crusty baguettes:
Baguette Slicing Tray
This useful cutting board is made up of a removable slat top and a tray underneath which catches the crumbs that fall from a crisp bread roll or baguette. What a clever idea! When finished slicing your crunchy loaf, just lift the top to collect the crumbs, to pass on to the birds or to sprinkle onto your soup!
Here is a closer look:
I will be back soon with more unusual items from Spain that I have adopted for use in my home.
Weather here in Tenerife North is warm with very high humidity - over 75%, which is high for us.
No sun today but we are happy for the few drops of rain that have fallen.
Our weeds are growing well!
Have a good week and hasta la vista!