For the next few weeks, I’m going to present a variety of tapas. Why? Because we all love them and because I’m working on a project related to my photos which, if successful, I’ll present at the end of the series. But, first, the genesis and metamorphosis of tapas.
It’s been said that the tradition of tapas began when open-air bars in Spain would place a piece of bread over the top of a wine glass to keep the flies from landing in the drink. That evolved into a simple topping on the bread . As time passed and with the globalization of cuisines in the last few decades, the term ‘tapas’ has taken on the meaning of ‘small plates’, ranging from bar snacks (like almonds) — to appetizers — to small, yet sophisticated, entreés. There is no wrong tapa in my book!
Almendras: Unsalted almonds tossed with a little olive oil and baked in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Remove and salt liberally with coarse sea salt. Sprinkle smoked paprika and toss again. Best served slightly warm.
Cazuela de Garbanzos con Chorizo: Sauteed chorizo bits, 1 clove garlic, 1 can of garbanzo beans with liquid, lots of oregano. Cook down till thickened and porridge-like.
Pan de Tomate: Toasted bread rubbed with raw garlic and topped with ground tomatoes. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle coarse salt.
Anchovy Wrapped Around Spanish Olive. This one is really easy!
Marinated Mushrooms. Cut in quarters. Saute in olive oil with finely chopped garlic without moving for a few minutes. Add a splash of white wine and cook a few more minutes till tender. Finish with S+P and a squeeze of lemon and chopped parsley.