I created this tapa for 2012 new years eve celebration. We were going to host a party for around 50 of our best friends ( 😀 ) and we were making the usual stuff we cook for this kind of event. The hummus, guacamole, barbecue meats and fish, several salads, etc., but we realise that, since the party was going to have a Spanish theme -we were even going to eat the 12 grapes of luck and all our guests were wearing red underwear-, we needed some Spanish tapas to give it a more authentic taste.
And so we had some blood sausages -very popular in Estonia too, where I was at that point-, and some roasted bell peppers from the shop and, well, magic happened once more in the kitchen and, since then, I love making these delicious tapas, no matter where I am.
This tapa consists of 3 components plus the bread. These are the blood sausage, with which we will make a pudding, the roasted bell pepper and tomato sauce and the caramelised onion.
Ingredients -serves 8
For the caramelised onion
· 6 medium-size onions
· Extra virgin olive oil
· Brown sugar (optional)
· Balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp
· Salt, 1/2 tsp
· Freshly ground black pepper, 1 pinch
For the blood sausage pudding
· Blood sausages, medium-size, 6
· Extra virgin olive oil
· Pine nuts, 50gr
· Thyme, dry or fresh, 1 tsp
Roasted pepper and tomato sauce
Start by preparing your roasted bell pepper salad and, once you have it, pour about 1 cup in a cooking pot together with the tomato paste or pasatta. Bring it to a boil and let it simmer for about 5 minutes while you add the sugar to the mix. After 5 minutes, make it into a fine puree with a blender and leave it to simmer at a low heat for another 15 minutes, or until it acquires a thick consistency. Set it aside.
Peel and julienne all the onions
Toss them into a cooking pot with a bit of oil at a medium heat and let them start cooking for 2 or 3 minutes.
Add the salt and let the onions release their water and start reducing. Now you can lower the heat to medium-low.
There’s really no trick here. If you don’t use sugar, let them reduce, stirring them every minute or so, for around 30 minutes or until they have a dark, caramel-like color. If you want to use sugar, them add it after 20 minutes and move constantly in order to avoid the sugar caramelising.
Once the onions have the desired color, add the balsamic vinegar and crank up the heat to maximum, moving constantly for about 3 or 4 minutes. Reserve.
Blood sausage pudding
Remove the casings from the sausages and let them warm up a bit at room temperature.
In the meantime, toast the pine nuts in a hot pan with drop of olive oil and reserve them.
Once the sausages are at room temperature, toss them on a skillet and heat up the oil to a medium heat. Move them constantly. The fat they have -although blood sausages actually don’t have much fat compared to other sausages-, will start melting and it will enable for the paste-like texture to form and at the same time, the meat will start acquiring a darker color that it’s just beautiful.
Add the thyme and keep mixing the sausage together until the fat is rendered and they have the right consistency, about 5 minutes.
Building our delicious tapa
Toast some bread in the oven or toaster. Don’t make them too dark or hard, as we want to be able to bite the tapa without the bread crumbling.
Spread some of the pepper-tomato sauce over the bread. Just a little bit, because we don’t want the bread to get soggy.
Add a couple of spoonfuls of the blood sausage pudding and flatten it over the bread.
Add a couple of spoonfuls of the pepper-tomato sauce.
Add some of the caramelised onion, about 2 tsp, over the sauce.
For a garnish and decoration, add some of the thyme leaves and some flakes of sea salt or Maldon on top of the tapa and, there you go!
This one, enjoy with a cold amber beer or a nice red wine. And Salud!