Just for a change I actually managed to prepare a few little things before Christmas – nothing major, just a few nibbles to complement the first drinks of the day, chatting in the kitchen.
All lifted from Pepita Aris’ Tapas & Traditional Spanish Cooking, Kindle edition currently £2.99. The whole of this book is contained in The Food of Spain, Africa and the Middle East, hardback £14.99 and if you looked on Amazon you’d find several alternatives and several prices. Whatever the format it is a Good Book.
The star is the Olive & Anchovy bites. To quote Ms Aris, both olives and anchovies contain salt which helps to stimulate thirst and therefore drinking – a high recommendation. And they are dead easy to make (and eat).
Throw 115g each of flour, butter and sharp cheese into a processor together with 50g chopped anchovies, 50g chopped black olives and bit of cayenne. Blitz until a dough forms. Chill the dough, roll it out thinly and cut into triangles. Bake at 200C for about 10 minutes.
Marinated Olives: to 2 tbsp olive oil & 1 tbsp sherry vinegar add ½ tsp coriander seed, ½ tsp fennel seed, 2 cloves garlic crushed, 1 tsp chopped rosemary, 2 tsp chopped parsley. Stir through 230g mixed black & green olives.
Marinated Cheese: One of the more unusual things you can do to Carrie’s cheese (Cosyn Cymru). I used 150g of Olwyn Fawr but any of her hard cheeses would do – Manchego at a pinch. To 6 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp white wine vinegar add 1 tsp black pepper corns, 1 clove garlic sliced + fresh thyme or tarragon. Stir in the cheese cut into chunks.
In addition she gives you Salted Almonds: 200g almonds gently fried in butter and olive oil and then tossed in a mixture of salt with a little cayenne.
Sadly they did not survive long enough to be included in the photo …