If you’ve never had txistorra from the streets of San Sebastian then its possible you’ve never been to Santo Tomas Festival. This festival is held yearly in San Sebastian, Spain to celebrate Spanish food. It has been said that every December (21st to be exact) since the 1300’s the Hamlet people have come down to San Sebastian to collect or pay rent for their land and sell their produce. Selling produce was a good way for the Hamlet people to make the most of their trip to the city. Now the tradition has grown into a community festival where organizations like schools, local businesses and other community groups set up carts selling homemade goods and (of course) txistorra. Txistorra is a Spanish sausage that contains minced pork or sometimes a combination of pork and beef and has a vibrant red color after being cooked. But, Txistorra is not the only food sold at this one-day extravaganza … Talos (which is essentially corn bread with txistorra or cheese filling) can also be found at many of the food carts. On this day carts can be found all over the city, but the largest crowds gather in old town at Constitution Square or Guipuzcoa Square.
The food may be the focus, but it’s not the only star of Saint Thomas Day. The vendors sell all kinds of wares, which could be anything from cheese and honey to cider and cakes. Saint Thomas Day is really the celebration of all things Spain. Even the animals get some appreciation on this day, as there is an annual pig raffle. One lucky (or unlucky) pig is fattened up for months leading up to the big day and by the time Saint Thomas Day arrives the pig is a thing of oversized beauty. The winner of the raffle gets to become the proud owner of the biggest pig around.
If you’ve never eaten txistorra from the streets of San Sebastian let me highly recommend it. With great food, great people, and hundreds of years of tradition Santo Tomas Festival is truly a one of a kind experience.