What do the green peppers have in common with the Camino?
Even if you haven’t walked the Camino Portugués (yet) but you visited Galicia, you’ve probably heard and maybe even tried the famous “pimentos de Padrón”.
There is a short popular Galician rhyme saying:
Pimentos de Padrón,
Uns pican e outros non.
Green peppers from Padrón
Some of them are spicy, other not.
And this is like a lottery; there is no way of knowing previously which are which. Once they are served, your chances are 50-50.
If you ever had a bad luck of tasting the spicy ones… well, probably your Galician friends were crying of laughter, but your tears were falling for quite a different reason. 😉
Padrón – the homeland of the tricky peppers is the last stop on the Camino Portugués before reaching Santiago.
But… on a small detour, there is an alternative Camino leading to Herbón, another paradise of spicy peppers. The connoisseurs say that the real peppers are from Herbón and that the Padrón ones are only the light version of the Herbón specialty.
But Herbón has something more to offer. The huge beautiful Franciscan monastery opens its doors to the pilgrims. A set of red arrows leads to this unique place. Run by hospitaleros – volunteers, this mystical albergue-monastery with 20 beds has however tough rules of admission: no bookings, no organized groups, no pilgrims transferring their luggage. The pilgrims are admitted from 4 pm, they share a common dinner with monks, and they pay… nothing or whatever they consider worth.
Nevertheless, since last week the future of the magnificent Herbón is in danger. The monks might be transferred to O Cebreiro – the good thing is that they would keep contact with pilgrims, but… the 14th century monastery will probably become closed. Some dishonest local politicians “forgot” to include it in the official list of the “properties of cultural interest” so suddenly it sadly appears as though this historical building had nor historical nor cultural value.
It would be a huge loss for the Camino’s richness and diversity if this sad scenario becomes truth.
Dear pilgrims! If you are already walking the Camino Portugués and have no idea where to stay for your last overnight of the Camino Portugués – just head to Herbón and try this unbelievable experience and help defend one of the most magical albergues of that route.