Francine's Party Tips: Tapas Nibbles

these are party tips provided by francine segan for tapas nibbles - olay!

Party Tips

Francine’s Party Tips: Tapas Nibbles

Advice for the cooking challenged

-Francine Segan

tapas nibblesFeeding friends is easy if you can cook, but what do you serve if you can’t? The answer –tapas. A tapas party is one of the … no, it is the easiest way to entertain. Think of it as a meal that skips the main course!

The word tapas comes from the Spanish tapar, which means to cover. In Spain barkeepers traditionally served drinks covered, topped, with a small plate of complimentary nibbles.

Raid a local gourmet shop and buy anything that looks good like:


A spicy smoked pork sausage. Serve it sliced with thick-cut potato chips or crusty bread.


Air-dried fresh tuna loin. Serve it sliced paper thin with wedges of lemon and crusty bread.

Spanish Olives

Large green queen or manzanilla olives come plain or stuffed with a variety of fillings including anchovies, garlic, piquillo peppers, salmon, almonds and onions.

Marcona almonds

Large flavorful almonds from Valencia served fried in olive oil and topped with sea salt.

Caper berries

When the small caper bud matures the resulting fruit is the caper berry. The olive-sized caper berries come with an attractive long stem and are much, much milder than tiny capers. A wonderful nibble with drinks.

Piquillo Pepper

Wood-roasted red peppers from Navarra, ready-made in glass jars, are available in most gourmet food shops.

Marinated or grilled vegetables

Artichokes, asparagus, mushrooms, onions and oil-cured sun dried tomatoes all make wonderful tapas.

Spanish Cheeses served with a wedge of membrillo – a quince paste – or slices of fig-nut log, available in fine cheese shops. Or you can serve the cheese melted in a skillet topped with some sautéed garlic for a quick modern fondue.

Spain boasts over 100 types of cheeses so you’re sure to find one you just can’t live without. For me it’s Tetilla, a cheese that looks like a breast and hence the name. It’s a rich, smooth, slightly salty cow’s milk cheese.

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