Quick and Easy Tapas Recipes

The great thing about Tapas is that it can be prepared before your guests arrive leaving you to relax and enjoy their company rather than darting back and forth to the kitchen. Serve with crusty bread, olive oil and lemon wedges (check out our blog on how to make your own easy artisanal bread).  Washed down with either Spanish wine or your favourite drop, these tasty morsels will be a hit with everyone.  Salud!

 Marinated Olives

  • 250g / 8 oz large black and green olives (not pitted)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil (85 ml)
  • 1 tsp fresh chopped rosemary leaves (or ½ tsp dry oregano or 1 tsp fresh thyme)


If the olives you have purchased are pre-marinated, drain the oil and use your own marinade as the olive oil quality is not great in the pre-marinated products.  Cold pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil is best.

Combine ingredients in an airtight jar and refrigerate for 24 hours for maximum flavour.  Bring to room temperature before serving. Do not consume olives with raw garlic after 3 days because minced raw garlic goes off even if it is stored in the fridge in oil.



  • 2 (250g / 8 oz) Raw Chorizos, sliced
  • ½ tsp Olive oil


Using Chorizos that have not already been cured heat oil in frypan over high heat and cook Chorizos until golden brown on both sides.  Transfer to serving bowl and drizzle pan oil over the sausages.


Spanish Antipasto

  • Jamón dry-cured Spanish Ham (Can be substituted with Prosciutto Italian dry-cured ham)
  • Manchego Spanish Cheese (can be substituted with Pecorino or Parmesan cheese)
  • White Anchovies


Bring cheese to room temperature.  Place on platter with ham and anchovies.


Garlic Mushrooms

  • ¼ cup olive oil (65 ml)
  • 4 garlic cloves – 3 smashed, 1 minced
  • 300 g / 10 oz Swiss brown or other small mushrooms
  • Finely chopped parsley


Halve or quarter the mushrooms, depending on size.  Place garlic in skillet with the oil over medium heat.  Sauté for 10 minutes, squashing the smashed garlic down to squeeze juice out as it cooks, until garlic is golden brown.  Sprinkle mushrooms with salt and pepper.  Turn stove up to high and add mushrooms. Cook till golden brown and sprinkle with chopped parsley. 


 Garlic Prawns

  • ¼ cup / 65 ml olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves – 3 smashed, 1 minced
  • 250 g / 8 oz raw prawns, peeled
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes or fresh red chilli, diced
  • Finely chopped parsley
  • ½ a lemon


Use the same method as the mushrooms but cook for 2 minutes or until charred and just cooked.  Sprinkle with parsley and red pepper flakes and a squeeze of lemon.


Spicy Spanish meatballs

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped 
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 500g pork and veal mince 
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves, plus extra, to serve
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes with paste
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice


Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until onion has softened. Add garlic and fennel. Cook for 1 minute or until fragrant. Remove from heat. Cool for 5 minutes.

Combine mince, egg, breadcrumbs, parsley, parmesan and onion mixture in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Roll level tablespoons of mixture into balls. Place on a large plate.

Heat remaining oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Cook meatballs, in batches, turning for 5 to 7 minutes or until browned. Transfer to a plate.

Add chilli and lemon rind to pan. Cook for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add tomato and lemon juice. Bring to a simmer. Add meatballs. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes or until sauce has thickened and meatballs are cooked through. Serve, topped with extra parsley.


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