Marla’s Tapas and Vineyard

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I love tapas! I love that tapas are creative, tasty food morsels meant to be discovered and enjoyed in moderation (small portions) like wine. I love that tapas time can be ANYTIME! I love that tapas are meant to be shared and savoured among good company. What I love most about tapas, though, is the opportunity to enjoy a variety of food choices in one sitting. Whenever I am at a restaurant, I struggle making a decision about what to order. Tapas solves this problem.

I’m just beginning to get creative in my tapas kitchen AND in my vineyard (Disclaimer: I don’t really have a vineyard other than the one in my imagination….) BUT it’s a very good vineyard 🙂 If you’ve read my book, Wine Within Your Comfort Zone, you already know how much of a wine lover I am and now my other secret is out, I’m a foodie too 🙂

The roots of tapas are strongly linked to Spain however in North America tapas are defined by their appetizer size, uniqueness and can encompass all kinds of ethnic delights. With respect to the Spanish it just made sense to begin with a breakfast tapas similar to a Spanish omelette, only much smaller.

Fire Roasted Tomato Pepper Egg-apas!

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Serve this to your family or breakfast guests. One egg-apas serves three small portions. For a nice balance I’ll also serve mini fruit skewers with yogurt dip as a starter, then finish with zucchini latkes. (my secret recipe coming soon!)

I use a small, non-stick fry pan lightly coated in a small amount of extra virgin olive oil (keep in mind the smoke point of this oil is higher than most but you’ll be cooking on medium to med/low heat).

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Want to learn more about Olive Oil?

http://www.thekitchn.com/did-you-know-a-lot-of-olive-oil-isnt-from-italy-207153

http://www.thekitchn.com/whats-the-difference-between-olive-oil-and-extra-virgin-olive-oil-word-of-mouth-218767

I do my best to create healthier, less fat versions of dishes so in this recipe I use one yolk and three egg whites, all whisked together. Honestly, you won’t miss the other two yolks one eye-yolka!

You can vary the fillings to your liking but the key to tasty, light tapas is, ‘less is more’. This allows your taste buds to appreciate and enjoy the combined flavours. Add a palm full of chopped red and green pepper along with pre-cooked sun-dried tomato turkey sausage. Peppers and sausage go well together. The sun-dried tomato turkey sausage is lean and very savoury however, not an easy find unless you happen to live in Greater Vancouver (http://www.stapletonsausage.ca). You could also spice it up by using chorizo or any meat of your choice.

Ingredients for egg-apas

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

3 egg whites

1 egg yolk (no yolkin)

1 palm full of red and green peppers (about 1/4 C of each)

1 palm full of cooked, diced turkey sausage

fire roasted tomatoes (to your liking)

salt, pepper, cayenne pepper…. season as you wish

Italian parsley and/or garnish of your choice

Method

Heat olive oil in a small, non-stick pan on medium. Add the peppers and pre-cooked meat. After a few minutes of sauteing, whisk the egg mixture together and add to the pan. The heat should sear the bottom of the eggs on contact but remember not to let it get overly hot. As it sets on the bottom lift the sides and tip the fry pan so the runny parts slide under and get cooked too. Doing this on all edges of the pan gives your tapas a peak and valley kind of appearance. It also shifts the uncooked egg to the base, thinning out the top. Add your seasonings to taste such as, salt and pepper, etc. Cover the tapas with a glass lid so you can watch the top cook and turn the heat down to low. It will only take a minute or too to set.

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Once cooked place the tapas on a cutting board to cool a couple of minutes. Cut it into three equal triangles. Overlap each piece in the centre of a serving plate and top with fire roasted tomatoes or salsa (I prefer the fire roasted tomatoes because the title of this recipe says Fire Roasted Tomato!). Go ahead and garnish with Italian parsley if you like. Also, a light, spreadable cheese alongside a baguette is a perfect accompaniment. (In the photo I used warmed whole grain slider thins).

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Rather than the usual breakfast mimosa, try this:

3 oz of light crisp white wine such as, Barefoot Refresh from California

6 oz of soda water

lime juice to taste

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Buen Apetito!

Your comments are always welcome and appreciated!!

Warmest Regards

Marla O’Brien

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