One experience for which I am eternally grateful is my discovery of 'tapas' - to think I could have gone through my culinary life without experiencing tapas first hand is pretty unthinkable. For those less up to speed when it comes to 'tapas' and tapas traditions, over the next few weeks I'll be taking you through some of the background to how these dishes evolved, providing you with some recipes and also taking you to a few of the many bars that feature in my Spain. Due to my living in a season beach resort in Almeria Province, some of the establishments will only be open for about 4 or 5 months of the year, and so we'll take advantage of this now during the summer...before they start to close in October, and beyond.
The tapas depicted in this photo is onion and gambas (small prawns) paella photographed in one of the local 'chiringuitos' (beachbars) - this is a common event here whereby you can be given a free tapas with your drink in this case a caña (a small beer) or sometimes you may have to pay (it varies from bar to bar here in my area although not so far away they have different tapas traditions, which I'll share with you another time). But for me, the great thing is that from mid-morning to late evening you can find a bar still serving tapas. That's not to say you always to have alcoholic drinks but pretty much any drink will now be acceptable...and of course there are alcohol-free beers and some wines available.