Quick Recipes and Easy

Spanish Recipes – Tempting Tapas Dishes

Spain is well-known for its tapas and, whichever Spanish bar you
frequent, in whichever area of the country, you are sure to
find them.

So, what exactly are “tapas” and where did the name come from?

Tapas are, essentially, snacks and the word literally means
“cover”. The name originates from the card which used to be
placed on top of your drink to protect it from the flies
(this can be a hot country!).

At some point in time, it became well loved to place a small
snack on top of this card. At first, this would just have
been something simple like a few nuts and olives, or a fresh
slice of crusty Spanish bread plus topping.

In those, not-so-far-gone days, the tapas were free! That
is not usually the case these days, although you will
occasionally be presented with a small dish of crisps or
olives to go with your drink.

Nowadays, there is a wide variety of (paid) tapas, with
some bars really going-to-town on them and offering
highly original, magnificently presented snacks.

But, even a honestly humble bar will present you with the
opportunity to delight in a slice of tortilla (Spanish omelette),
boquerones (fresh, marinated anchovies preserved in olive
oil and garlic), calamares (squid), champiñones al ajillo
(garlic mushrooms), jamón serrano, Manchego cheese, etc.

Are you keen on cooking? Then perhaps you would like
to try out this tapas potato recipe called “Patatas
Bravas”. An ancient Spanish favorite, it is simple to
prepare, using honestly basic ingrediants but, it should
only be savored by the courageous as it is quite spicy!
Ingrediants are for four people.


750 g potatoes

4 dessertspoons olive oil

Salt and black pepper

2 teaspoons sweet paprika

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 dessertspoons red vinegar wine

2 teaspoons tomato purée


1. Peel potatoes and cut into chunks.

2. Fry in oil for 3-4 minutes until lightly colored.

3. Add salt and pepper to potatoes.

4. Cover pan, lower heat and cook for 20 minutes.

5. Sprinkle with paprika and cayenne. Increase heat.

6. Mix wine vinegar with tomato purée. Add to pan.

7. Cook a couple of minutes, constantly stirring.

8. There should be no loose liquid or oil in the pan.

Should you fancy coming to the country to try the original
version, there are plenty of afternoon Tapas Tours available
throughout Spain for you to delight in! Or download the
wonderful e-book of 300 Simple Tapas Recipes!

Linda Plummer is webmistress of
top-tour-of-spain.com Top Tour of Spain
providing comprehensive information on Spain for travel, food,
language and living.

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