Thursday, 16 April 2009
We had the kind of lunch I love yesterday - a selection of little dishes created from assorted leftovers and the contents of the storecupboard. I already had some red peppers I'd roasted the day before which I thought would go well with the sardines we try to fit in once a week as a nod to our recommended oily fish intake. (I have to say I don't much like them so strong flavours like the peppers help)
I also had some asparagus stalks leftover from an omelette which had only used the tips. so sliced those up and stir-fried them for a cooked 'salad' (above) adding a splash of soy sauce and a bit of chopped parsley. (I was thinking this would also have been good with grated ginger and fresh coriander and maybe a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds - not as a tapa but a stir-fried side for salmon or tuna)
There was also a stale baguette (a common occurrence - baguettes stale very quickly) which I sliced and toasted on the hotplate then rubbed with garlic Spanish-style and drizzled with some of the oil I'd used to cook the peppers.
I laid it all out on little plates and must say it looked quite appealing. I could have added a couple of hard boiled eggs or a few slices of chorizo too if we'd had them.
Without looking it up I'm sure that this is the origin of tapas and their French counterpart hors d'oeuvres: a way to use up the leftovers from the previous day - cooked or uncooked. It took next to no time to prepare and felt like we'd had a 'proper' meal.
People sometimes question whether you should use offer leftovers to guests (do you? would you?) but I'd have been more than happy to share this meal with friends.