Tapas of Spicy Almonds, Olives and Marinated Cheese


  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp chopped rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 tsp sherry vinegar
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 and 1/2 cups of  green and black olives, pitted and or stuffed
  • 1/2 lb of goat's cheese
  • 1/2 lb of blue cheese
  • 8 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 garlic clove sliced
  • 3 fresh tarragon or thyme springs
  • fresh tarragon sprigs, to garnish
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp kosher or sea salt
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 4 tbs olive oil
  • 2 cups blanched almonds

These three simple ingredients are lightly flavored to create a Spanish tapas medley that is perfect to serve with pre-dinner drinks.


  • For the olives, crush the coriander and fennel seeds. Mix with the rosemary, parsley, garlic, vinegar and oil and pour over the olives in a bowl. cover and chill for up to a week.
  • For the cheese, cut into bite size pieces, leaving the rind on. Place the cheese in a bowl. Mix together the oil, vinegar, peppercorns, garlic and herb sprigs and pour over the cheese. Cover and chill for up to 3 days. Make sure you turn the cheese cubes making sure they are covered in the marinade.
  • For the almonds, mix together the cayenne pepper and salt in a bowl. Melt the butter with the olive oil in a saute pan. add the almonds and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes or until the almonds are golden.
  • Place the almonds in the salt mixture and toss until coated well. Let them cool. They may be stored in an airtight jar for up to a week.
  • To serve the tapas, arrange in small shallow serving dishes.Use fresh sprigs of tarragon to garnish the cheese and sprinkle the almonds with a little more salt.

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