Tapas is something that I think is so enjoyable as a family meal, especially on a weekend when the kids can get involved in the cooking, it makes it into a really family event. I have also found that finger food, or food that Reuben serves himself at the table, and I have come to the conclusion that he just feels so much more grown up and proud of himself for serving his own dinner that he eats better! A welcome relief from the usual struggle to get food into him when he is tired and doesn’t want to comply (excluding sausage… that never fails)!
This is a recipe that my Mum has made for years when we have had a tapas evening and it always goes down a treat. So yummy, and easy to make too!
- 3/4 pound of spinach, thick stems removed as they will be too tough
- pinch of salt
- 2 teaspoons of olive oil
- 1 small clove of garlic minced
- 3 tablespoons grated cheese (manchego if you have it or parmesan will do just as well)
- oil for frying
For the buñuelo dough:
- 1 cup of water
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup of flour
- 2 eggs
Wash and drain the spinach leaves, then place them in a pot with no added water and a pinch of salt and cook for about 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and chop well.
Heat the olive oil in a pan, sauté the garlic and then add the spinach and sauté for a minute or so, don’t allow it to brown as it will make the garlic bitter. Put to one side and make the dough.
For the dough, place the water, butter, nutmeg and salt in a saucepan over a medium heat, when the water starts to boil add the flour all in one go. Lower your heat right down and stir fast until the dough starts to form a ball. Continue cooking for a few minutes once this starts to happen to avoid that awful floury taste.
Turn off the heat and once it has cooled slightly, beat the eggs in one at a time. I find this easiest to do in my mixer as it beats them faster than I can and stops the eggs cooking.
Stir in the spinach and the grated cheese.
You need to form little balls of the dough, which will be quite sticky, and drop them into a pan with at least 1/2 inch of oil. I actually confess to using a deep fat fryer for this, as I find it easier without having to keep turning the balls, but if you do use a pan then just remember to flip the balls over and don’t over heat the oil.
Finally, you will know these are done when they are puffy and golden brown. Delicious!