Tapas dinner for friends
I love Christmas. I love cooking the traditional food of Christmas, as it is the only time we eat it, so it means Christmas. However I like to have a few old friends over on Christmas Eve for drinks when we eat food that is a bit more exotic compared to the wide-appeal ritual foods required for a mixed-age bunch of family on Christmas Day.
On a recent trip to Spain I finally “got” tapas. Tapas is plates of food, served in no particular order that is the glue that holds together an occasion when talking and drinking is going on.
The Spanish, like most Europeans, wisely always eat when they drink alcohol, something a lot of us Kiwis could take on board.
Serve these dishes in any order, except the sponge cakes (great with champagne), which are served last. By the time you have eaten this lot you will feel like you’ve eaten a good dinner.
Damn the carbs and serve crusty sourdough bread as well to fill up the big eaters. Merry Christmas!
If you can’t get a radicchio use witloof leaves or leave it out. This is also a good main course served with steamed rice. Get the recipe
Cos lettuce hearts with lots of crisp fried garlic is a classic Spanish tapas. I liked the idea of it with prawns so here is my version. Get the recipe
We ate the classic Sevillian tapas of chickpeas and spinach at the legendary Rinconcillo tapas bar in Seville, which happened to be in the neighbourhood we stayed in not long ago. I have given it a Kiwi twist by adding silverbeet. Get the recipe
This seems so ridiculously simple but is flavour-packed and one of my favourite tapas. Get the recipe
I needed a sugar hit about 11am one day in Seville sostopped in at the Confiteria Los Angeles for a coffee and the cake that the following recipe is based on. If you want a 101 on how to make the sponge, watch my video here. Get the recipe