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Food in SJPDP on Saturday and Sunday (in July)

Eugenia MinskLund

The only way to do it is to do it.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPDP (14 July - 17 August 2018)
#1
I arrive to Biarritz on Saturday, July 14, at 5pm. So, I assume I will be in SJPDP by 7pm. Are the stores still open at that time? I have read somewhere that they don't work on Sundays, is that true? I would prefer to buy food for the next day (Sunday) as I am really unhappy with what I see people describe as breakfasts available in albergues (I will be staying in Gite Makila).

The thing is that I can't start my day with anything containing sugar (pastries, juices, fruit, etc) as I need to control my blood sugar (it's a doctor's recommendation - so, not for discussion). And I can't eat the majority of popular carbs (such as pasta) - too much of it causes a migraine. I am a chronic sufferer with attacks up to 8 days long. That means I can't compromise my eating habits as it might end my trip early.

I need protein and cereal in the morning and protein and vegetables later on during the day. Will it be possible to organize my food for the first day of walking in SJPDP on Saturday evening or early Sunday morning OR should I bring staff from Sweden (yes, I am packing some dry cereal and an electric coil with me:) Recommendations and stories about how you've organized your particular diet on the Way are much appreciated.
 

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falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#2
Sunday will have a lot of store and restaurant closings. Your best bet will be Sunday morning.

Plan on eating a lot of eggs! If you are OK with potatoes, then Spanish tortilla is great anytime of day. In the morning you will have to look hard for anything but bread and coffee. If the cook is around, you can get a tortilla frances, known to the rest of us an an omelet. They can add cheese and maybe a meat. Beware of undercooked eggs. They look great sunny side up, but can give you salmonella poisoning. Go for well-cooked revuelta eggs (scrambled).
 

Eugenia MinskLund

The only way to do it is to do it.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPDP (14 July - 17 August 2018)
#3
Sunday will have a lot of store and restaurant closings. Your best bet will be Sunday morning.

Plan on eating a lot of eggs! If you are OK with potatoes, then Spanish tortilla is great anytime of day. In the morning you will have to look hard for anything but bread and coffee. If the cook is around, you can get a tortilla frances, known to the rest of us an an omelet. They can add cheese and maybe a meat. Beware of undercooked eggs. They look great sunny side up, but can give you salmonella poisoning. Go for well-cooked revuelta eggs (scrambled).
Yes, I am prepared for a lot of eggs on the way. Was thinking about boiling a package of 6 for the next day on some days. When you talk about undercooked eggs, do you mean they boil them, but eggs are not hard in the end?

Potatoes are a suicide for me:( I dare to eat it approx. once per few months, but usually I end up paying a high price for that.
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
#4
Go to Google Maps. Look for
"Saint Jean Pied de Port" (or any place) + supermarket (or "restaurants").
They will appear, many. Click in an icon for more info. Look for the watch icon and open the > icon; it will display horaires (if available).
Some restaurants in SJPP seem to be open Saturday night (that's what I remember, too), approx until 21 hs. But no chance in Sunday, not until mid-morning. Supermarkets and food stores (épiceries) will be closed.
As for your first days, if you take the plane+train option, buy food in Bayonne, for example in the Carrefour, near the SNCF station (8 Boulevard Alsace Lorraine).
On the other side, I'd not trust the "official" horaires posted in some establishments; not if I had a medical condition. I'd carry always an "emergency pack", especially in Sundays...but I suppose you have some experience with that.
Cheese and ham (if you can eat them) are excellent in Spain and France. Don't buy the pre-packaged stuff in supermarkets, go to little specialized stores.
Remember that the stage SJPP-Roncesvalles is very long; only chance of food (a limited one, more on the snack side) is in Orisson.
Buen camino
 

davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#5
I arrive to Biarritz on Saturday, July 14, at 5pm. So, I assume I will be in SJPDP by 7pm. Are the stores still open at that time? I have read somewhere that they don't work on Sundays, is that true? I would prefer to buy food for the next day (Sunday) as I am really unhappy with what I see people describe as breakfasts available in albergues (I will be staying in Gite Makila).

The thing is that I can't start my day with anything containing sugar (pastries, juices, fruit, etc) as I need to control my blood sugar (it's a doctor's recommendation - so, not for discussion). And I can't eat the majority of popular carbs (such as pasta) - too much of it causes a migraine. I am a chronic sufferer with attacks up to 8 days long. That means I can't compromise my eating habits as it might end my trip early.

I need protein and cereal in the morning and protein and vegetables later on during the day. Will it be possible to organize my food for the first day of walking in SJPDP on Saturday evening or early Sunday morning OR should I bring staff from Sweden (yes, I am packing some dry cereal and an electric coil with me:) Recommendations and stories about how you've organized your particular diet on the Way are much appreciated.
For a quick trail breakfast, I mix up quick-cooking oatmeal flakes, a tiny bit of salt, raisins, milk powder, and a bit of brown sugar. You could leave out the raisins and brown sugar, and add an artificial sweetener to the mix if you'd like a bit of sweetness. I portion this into zip lock baggies. I can add hot water to the baggie and spoon out the goodness after a short soak; I don't mind that the oats might be chewy, I actually prefer it that way. Warm water, or even cool water will work, but takes a bit longer to soften the oats. You can put this together before you leave.
 

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falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#6
When you talk about undercooked eggs, do you mean they boil them
The only boiled eggs I have seen in Spain are the ones I boiled. I mean sunny side up eggs. They are gorgeously prepared with deeply orange yolks, but not fully cooked. I had scrambled eggs in the restaurant in the Pedrouza area while my hiking companion had the gorgeous fried eggs. An hour letter he was projectile vomiting. While he was eating his lunch, another pilgrim admired his meal, and ordered the same thing. We staggered along pausing to hydrate and then vomit (at least him; I just frowned in sympathy).

We had to stop at the very inviting pension at Apartamentos Casa de Amancio for rest, rehydration, and recovery. The next day as we arrived in Praza do Obradorio, the pilgrim who had admired and eaten the eggs came running up, and without even a "buen camino" asked, "Did you have any problem with those eggs yesterday morning?" We had the concierge at San Martin Pinario call the restaurant, and the cook there said that they would be discarding that entire shipment of eggs. Only he knows if he did that!

Eggs are not refrigerated in Spain, though the science on that is in dispute. Temperature does not seem to be a cause per se of salmonella. I may allow salmonella to spread more rapidly. Eggs are locally procured, and the cleanliness is determined quite individually at the farm. I just require that they be thoroughly cooked, and won't eat the al dente torilla, for example.
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
#7
I arrive to Biarritz on Saturday, July 14, at 5pm. So, I assume I will be in SJPDP by 7pm. Are the stores still open at that time? .....
Do be aware that your arrival date, July 14, is Bastille Day, which is the French National holiday. Most commerce will be closed or on a limited holiday/Sunday schedule. Be prepared.

The town has scheduled a free fire works display over the Citadel for that night. Don't miss it!

Good luck and Buen camino!
 
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
Frances Sept 2017 (bike)
#8
Might sound obvious, but I'd also suggest learning Spanish for the food items you require or cant eat, maybe print some sheets because I was surprised by the lack of English spoken on the camino.
 

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