22 Dec 2011

Tomato, Garlic, Olives and Bread Tapas

My mom and I love appetizers. We can make a meal out of them. Currently we are trying to understand more about Spanish cuisine, particularly the concept of tapas. Everyone knows that they are perfect for cocktail parties and the stories about their origin are numerous. But the one that intrigues me most is the vision of wealthy Spanish nobles lounging on couches and consuming food. Apparently they did not like to use cutlery as they reclined on their left arms and used only the right arm for eating! This is how the concept of finger food or nibbles, as I call them, was introduced in Spain.

Olives and tomatoes are like my comfort food. I love lounging with a book and a plate of olive and tomato tapas by my side.

Once the tomatoes are blanched and chopped, these are pretty simple to make. The use of brown sugar and lemon impart a different sort of tangy flavor. I suggest that you keep the flavor simple and do not add any extra garnishes.

Tomato, Garlic, Olives and Bread Tapas
Adapted from Graphiti
 Serves 4

4 large tomatoes, blanched, peeled, deseeded and finely chopped
4 – 5 large cloves of garlic, finely minced
Zest of ½ lime
1 tbsp lime juice
1 ½ tsp brown sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
A few black olives finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
6 slices brown bread
Black olive slices for garnish

  1. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a pan, add garlic and sauté until it starts to brown.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes, brown sugar and lime zest. Cook stirring, until tomatoes turn mushy.
  3. Add olives, lime juice and remaining oil, mix well and cook for another 6 – 8 mins.
  4. Season with salt and pepper, remove from fire and set it aside.
  5. Toast the bread slices and cut into 4 squares each.
Spoon the tomato, garlic and olive mix onto each piece. Garnish with olive slices and serve immediately


  1. I love tomatoes. And I love you for putting up so many tomato based recipes. I could eat tomatoes all day. I do not get along with people who don't like tomatoes( I mean, cmon)
    When those ripe (but firm) and organic tomatoes are available I love to eat them raw. Or my Ma has this recipe with tomatoes which is like a mesh of soup/puree/juice. It's a bowl of tangy, tomatoe-y, spicy, heaven.

  2. I love bite sized treats. this is perfect.