‘Pipa’ Culture

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In Spain, people eat pipas – sunflower seeds. They have a cover that you need to crack open to get to the seed; the seed is miniscule and tastes like…umm…nothing.

Seeing them being sold extensively both in supermarkets and on the streets, by companies both local and international, I decided to buy some. Not knowing much about this snack that Spaniards seem to be munching on all the time, I decided not to be boring and bought barbeque flavour.

Now, since the cover of these pipas is well ‘barbequed’, it didn’t occur to me that I had to break past the delicious BBQ flavoured shell to eat the thing, that, has no flavour.

So here I am, eating these pipas with their cover, 100% sure that I know what I’m doing and thinking how on earth do people swallow these things? Don’t they choke?

Yeah ok. Really dumb. But why would you want to bother flavouring the cover of something you don’t eat!?

I spent a few days wondering if I was more retarded than the concept.

Anyway, today there is a phrase in Spanish ‘pasando pipa‘ that originates (apparently) from the whole process of friends getting together, having fun and eating pipas. This was done so that it’s never awkward when there is nothing to say, everyone is always occupied eating (or trying to eat) pipas, so never an awkward silence. Today this phrase means ‘having a good time’!

So chicos, hope you are ‘enjoying the sunflower seeds.’ 😛

7 responses to “‘Pipa’ Culture”

  1. Nuri Avatar

    You made my day!
    The thing about eating pipas is really silly, yes, because the good thing is swallowing the salty part on the shell. Not much flavour in the seed, as you say. I hate women who gather on a bench to talk with pipas and throw the shell on the floor. They do it, so rude…
    BTW: keep posting about Spanish things you find odd, it’s really funny

  2. Nuri Avatar

    Hey, I read your posts about travelling to Formentera, if you ever want to visit more of Catalonia, let me know, I’d be willing to acomodate you! And my hometown is nicer than Barcelona

  3. Abha Avatar

    Glad you enjoy my blog! where in Catalonia do you live?

  4. moryarti Avatar

    Pipa is parrot food

  5. Aneesh Avatar

    Hi Abha,

    Your blog is nice.
    Is that ur bum in ur profile pic?

  6. Nuri Avatar

    Abha, I alredy sent you an email

  7. Rams Avatar

    so you’ve never seen/tasted pipas before in Dubai..? The place is full of them.. go to Creek park on a Friday – Everyone is pipping..! Oh.. it’s supposed to be good for your hair……………………..

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