Posts Tagged ‘Tapas’

Mama & the Tapas, final posting

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

This is the final posting. To see Parts 1 and 2, use these links: and

These last two recipes complete my postings for over the holiday week-end, but you can make them anytime!

Polenta with Black Bean Topping


6 one-inch thick polenta slices (from a purchased polenta log)
one tablespoon olive oil

one cup cooked black beans (I used a BPA free can of beans for convenience and because they are softer than my own soaked beans)
one garlic clove, minced
one small onion, chopped
3/4 cup chopped bell peppers (red, yellow, orange)
1 cup loosely packed cilantro, with stems, chopped
juice of a small lemon or lime
1/2 tsp. salt
cayenne pepper to taste

Place sliced polenta in an oiled fry pan and fry lightly on both sides, until the edges begin to brown. Leave in pan with a cover to stay warm. Puree cooked black beans with garlic. Place in a bowl with minced garlic and peppers. Add chopped cilantro, lemon, salt and cayenne and mix well. Place a dollop of black bean mix onto warm polenta. If you wish, you can top with a small slice of raw onion or some extra cilantro. Any extra black bean mix can be used in a wrap or as a dip for chips.



Hoomus on Pita Chips

small tub of hoomus (chick pea dip)*
pita bread that has been made into wedges
1- 2 tablespoons olive oil 
garlic powder to taste
1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste)
cumin to taste
parsley and/or paprika

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut pita into small wedges (bite-sized). Brush both sides with olive oil and bake until brown, but not too dark or they will be too hard. (maybe 5 minutes)

Spread small amount of hoomus each pita point and garnish with parsley and/or paprika. Serve warm or cold.

*Note: I usually make my own hoomus with sprouted chickpeas:

To sprout chickpeas, soak 1 c. dry chickpeas overnight in plenty of water.
Drain and place in a colander with its of holes. Rinse 3 times a day and in about 2- 3 days they will be ready. (Sprout tail will be as long as a chickpea’s diameter.) Cook in water, more than enough to cover until soft enough to puree in blender.

Drain and cool beans slightly, add a small amount water and 2 garlic cloves to blender head and add chickpeas and garlic and puree. In a bowl, place pureed chickpeas/garlic, add about 1/2 cup tahini (sesame paste), some cumin and juice of a lemon and mix well.  Should be thick. Use as a spread.

If using as a dip, place on a flat plate, drizzle on some olive oil, add parsley and top with paprika for color and taste. Serves chilled or even warm.


P.S. Forgot to post my photo of the tapas table I set over the week-end. It rained on Saturday so we ate indoors, so this is inside my living room.

Mama & the Tapas

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

My youngest child, a daughter, is coming to visit with her partner over the July 4th week-end.  When she was a teenager she fell in love with the group, The Mamas and the Papas, even though they were no longer a group. In fact, they were popular in the late 60s, 10 years before she was born. But we played the recordings, and their sound struck a chord in her, so I thought I would surprise her with some tapas when she comes. (See my CD cover below.)  197925335

According to Wikipedia, tapas are a wide variety of appetizers or snacks, hot or cold, in Spanish cuisine. They have become part of the American cuisine scene, and lend themselves to bar menus, since they are small plates often needing only one bite. According to our Spanish family member, Ignacio, the word tapas actually means lid or top.

In earlier days, before air conditioning, flies often landed in wine glasses. To stop this, something was used to cover the wine glass. This is confirmed by Wikipedia, which states: As mentioned above, a commonly cited explanation is that an item, be it bread or a flat card, etc., would often be placed on top of a drink to protect it from fruit flies; at some point it became a habit to top this “cover” with a snack. Thus, a whole new category of cuisine was invented!

As a vegetarian, I will make meatless tapas. While in California, I read a tapas cookbook of my son-by-marriage, Jay. I did it to garner ideas more than recipes, and now I think I have a handle on what to make. Here is a line-up of ideas, some of which may end up on the July 4th table.

Marinated olives

Stuffed mushrooms

Pita points with hoomus

Tortilla triangles with guacamole

skewered cheese squares with cherry tomatoes

sweet potato slices with diced veggies

polenta slices with black bean topping

small pieces of rye bread with mock chopped liver




Stay tuned as I work on these recipes. Just as the Mamas & the Papas had a group sound, they also had good solo voices, so my Mama & the Tapas will strive for a grouping as well as individual flavors.


This is my 1986 CD that my daughter loved to listened to and inspired me to make tapas for July 4th.