La Lonja, the former bourse of maritime trade, is one of Palma’s most exciting buildings. Whenever I find it open I go inside for a brief time-travel into the Mediterranean middle ages. But it was only recently that I discovered Canteen 14 in the narrow street behind it, a tiny eatery that offers great soul food. Or rather: bowl food. The small yet exquisite menu is all about greens and grains, about colors and crunch, and mostly about great aroma.
“Bowling” has become a popular trend among foodies and there are endless possibilities to prepare a tasty bowl. The origin of which is deeply rooted in Zen-Buddhism and reflects the monks frugal yet healthy way of nutrition. A few broccoli flowers and pak choi, some pieces of beetroot and chickpeas plus a base of rice topped with grains, and here comes my vegetarian Buddha Bowl. If you love meat with your meal go for the Bangkok Bowl with chicken curry in creamy coconut-lemongrass sauce and Asian slaw, or the Beijing Bowl with slow cooked pork and vegetables in a sweet sticky ginger sauce.
Every now and then there are specials of the day, just ask Michele. She had been living in Bali for ten years where she not only fell in love with her future husband but also with Asian cuisine. When they returned to Europe they were looking for a place to live that reminded them of Bali. And settled for Mallorca where Michele opened Canteen 14 about a year ago. Its bright turquoise door faces the enchanted garden connecting La Lonja with the Consulat de Mar, the residence of the Balearic Prime Minister. My favorite place for a healthy lunch at Michele’s canteen is the small bench on the street where the taste of the food nicely mixes with the breeze from the sea.