The legend of Sant Jordi (Saint George) tells that after the battle between knight and dragon, the beast is impaled on the sword and falls. Out of his drops of blood a rose bush grows, which flowers every April. This fifteenth century tradition led to the custom in Catalonia of giving roses and books on Sant Jordi’s Day (23rd April).
The city fills with colour; it is a festive day and we find space in our routines to walk the streets, browse, and find a special book for a special person.
There is no food tradition associated with Sant Jordi, although for several decades, pastry chefs have joined the fiesta by baking the santo cake, and more recently, bakers have begun to make bread based on sobrasada (sausage meat), cheese and nuts.
Sant Jordi has become the main fiesta of Catalonia: the rose and the book.