Tapas: 10 recipes for all tastes. Olé!

Ah, summer! The sun, weekends with friends, aperitifs on the beach ... On hot days it is more pleasant to eat some snacks with a glass in hand rather than sitting at the table for a full meal, and in this the Spaniards and their famous tapas they are unbeatable! True gastronomic delights in miniature, there are countless types of Spanish tapas, and spending the evening with friends tasting tapas is a national sport in the Iberian Peninsula.

Spanish tapas: a little more than an aperitif

One might believe that the tapas are the Spanish equivalent of our pizzas and chips ... Absolutely not! The tapas they are miniature versions of traditional Spanish dishes and they are much more substantial and elaborate than canapés and pickles. Seafood, gazpacho, omelettes, skewers of meat or fish ... the portions are generous and fill up quickly!

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A feast for the eyes

Eating must also be a pleasure for the eyes and the eyes tapas, with their warm colors, they seem made to make your mouth water!

If you prepare an evening based on tapas, pay attention to presentation: serve them on plates with colorful and original shapes, find nice cups, put unusual cutlery on the table ... Even theappearance it must be original: mini skewers made with toothpicks, omelettes with funny shapes (use the cake molds), vegetable millefeuille (courgettes, aubergines, tomatoes etc ...), cheeses.

To make your guests' mouth water, play on colors: abounds with vegetables (red, green, yellow, orange!), herbs (they will give a touch of green), spices (paprika, pepper), colored sauces (olive paste, artichoke cream, pesto…).

The 10 most famous Spanish tapas recipes

It is difficult to summarize Spanish cuisine: each region has its own gastronomic specialties and its own tapas. Fish and seafood, meat and cured meats, rice, vegetables, garlic, peppers… there are countless possibilities and infinite variations! To help you, here are 10 recipes of tapas to be enjoyed without moderation.

1) Potato tortilla

Tortilla is the famous potato omelette!
It is very easy to make and can also be prepared well in advance as it is also good cold.

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4 eggs
500 gr of potatoes
2 onions
oil, pepper, salt.

Cut the potatoes into slices and season with pepper and salt.
Heat the oil in a pan with a high edge. Slice the onion.
Add the potatoes and onion and let them cook over medium heat with the lid on for 20-25 minutes.
Beat the eggs in a salad bowl, season with salt and pepper. When the potatoes are ready, pour them into the bowl and mix them gently with the beaten eggs.
Heat a drizzle of oil in a pan and pour all the contents of the salad bowl into it.
Cook the tortilla over low heat for 10 minutes over a flame with a lid. When the first side of the tortilla is cooked you need to flip the tortilla: take a plate and place it on the pan, then flip the pan onto the plate and slide the tortilla back into the pan. Cook over low heat for another 10 minutes, always with the lid on. Serve by placing the tortilla on a serving dish. Tortilla can be eaten hot or cold, cut into small pieces.

2) Onion rings

Delicious and crunchy, these onion rings make your aperitifs more joyful

3) Jamón con queso

One of the most famous and renowned foods all over the world is raw ham, better known as Jamòn. There are different types, the most valuable is the Pata Negra which is consumed very often throughout the country but which fortunately has also become available in Italy.
This recipe, in particular, requires its use together with the Torta Del Casar, a soft goat cheese typical of the region of Extremadura and (unfortunately) difficult to find in Italy. You can replace it with goat cheese or brie.

Ingredients for 4 people)
250 g of raw ham
200 g Torta Del Casar cheese (or goat cheese)
1 tomato
20 slices of bread
2 dried tomatoes
10 black olives

Cut the dried tomatoes and black olives and mix them in a bowl with a drizzle of oil. Peel and cut the tomatoes into thin slices and slice the ham and cheese. Prepare a vinaigrette with oil and vinegar. Prepare the croutons by placing a slice of tomato, one of raw ham on the bread and seasoning with the vinaigrette. Finish with the cheese and a tablespoon of dried tomatoes and black olives.

4) Patatas bravas

Another well known and consumed tapa is based on potatoes. We are talking about patatas bravas, slightly spicy, simple to make and excellent to accompany cocktails or a good glass of wine. If you don't like spicy you can eliminate chilli or Tabasco and eat them in a "soft" version.

small (or new) potatoes
olive oil
tomato puree

Peel and cut the potatoes into cubes and fry them in olive oil. Season with salt and place them on a paper towel to remove excess oil.
Prepare the sauce by mixing a tablespoon of mayonnaise, tomato puree, Tabasco and mustard. Cover the potatoes when they are still hot and serve. In place of Tabasco, fresh chilli can be used.

5) Polenta canapes

6) Calamares

Fish is also often used to create excellent tapas: anchovies, cod and prawns are just a few examples. In this case we propose the most classic, the calamares (fried squid) which can be accompanied by a sauce based on garlic and mayonnaise or by simple lemon wedges and a sprinkling of parsley.

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500 g of squid
25 cl milk
100 g of flour
1 egg
1 sachet of yeast
1 lemon
5 tablespoons of cold water

Wash the squid, cut them into slices and dip them in the milk. In a bowl, mix 50 g of flour, yeast, egg yolk, a tablespoon of oil and 5 of water. Add the salt and beat until you get a mixture without lumps. Leave to rest for half an hour.
Whisk the egg white until stiff and add it to the mixture. Remove the squid from the milk, flour them with the remaining 50g of flour and then dip them in the mixture. Fry in boiling oil, drain and serve, decorating with lemon slices and parsley.

Tasty and easy to make, polenta canapes can be prepared in advance and filled in a thousand different ways.

7) Deviled eggs

Deviled eggs are, in other words, hard-boiled eggs stuffed with tuna. They are very easy to make and, like the tortilla, they can be prepared a few hours before, stored in the refrigerator and served at the time of the aperitif.

Ingredients (for 6 people)
6 large hard-boiled eggs
2 cans of tuna
4 tablespoons of tomato sauce
salt and pepper
sweet paprika

Boil the eggs and let them cool in cold water. Peel them and cut them in half by carefully removing the yolks and setting the egg whites aside.
In a bowl, mash the yolks with a fork.
In another container, mix the tuna previously drained from the oil, the tomato puree and half of the firm yolks. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the filling inside the egg whites and garnish with the mayonnaise and the remaining firm yolks on top of each half. If you like, sprinkle with paprika. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

8) Chicken nuggets

Chicken nuggets with quinoa coating: a delicious and crunchy variant of the famous fried chicken wings, which can be tasted in many Spanish bars.

9) Vegetable puffs

Delicious and light, the vegetable puffs are prepared in the blink of an eye, because the vegetables are simply sliced ​​and baked in the oven.

Ingredients for 4 people)
1 roll of puff pastry
100 g of onion
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
2 ripe tomatoes
1 egg yolk
salt, pepper and oil to taste

Wash the vegetables well and rinse them with absorbent kitchen paper.
Cut the peppers into thin pieces. Finely slice the onion. Dice the tomatoes.
Unroll the puff pastry and cut it into 8 squares of about 4 cm.
Beat the egg with 1 cl of water and brush the puff pastry.
Season each square of puff pastry with the peppers, onion, tomatoes, add a drizzle of oil, season with salt and pepper. Bake in a hot oven at 180 degrees for about 20 minutes.
To make the puff pastries even softer, you can add small pieces of mozzarella or any other soft and tasty cheese.

10) Mussels au gratin

Tasty, beautiful to look at and good to taste, mussels au gratin are an excellent idea of ​​tapas.
It is preferable to choose large-sized mussels.

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Ingredients for 4 people)
15 large mussels
50 g of breadcrumbs
50 g of grated Parmesan (or pecorino)
3 cloves of garlic
1 sprig of parsley
1 lemon
Salt to taste.
pepper as needed.

Wash the mussels well under running water. Boil some water in a saucepan. When the water is boiling, add the mussels and cook uncovered over high heat, until the mussels open. Drain them, filtering the cooking liquid with a colander and setting it aside. Remove the half of the shell to which the mussel is not attached.
Put the finely chopped breadcrumbs, parmesan, garlic, parsley in a bowl, add salt, pepper, oil, and soften everything with the filtered liquid. Mix well until the mixture is nice and soft. Add some breadcrumbs if needed. Cover the half shell containing the mollusk with a little mixture, put the mussels in a baking dish and cook them au gratin in a hot oven at 180 ° for about 10 minutes. Serve the mussels hot or cold.

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