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When we're needing a change for lunch (or when I've forgotten to throw the ingredients into the bread machine early in the morning), I announce for all to hear, "Today we're having a tapas party!" I always get cheers from wherever the girls are in the house that can cheer. And then everyone runs into the kitchen to help out.
Tapas comes from Spanish cuisine, meaning a variety of finger foods that can be combined to make a meal or simply eaten as an appetizer. It usually means bite-sized foods.
"The serving of tapas is designed to encourage conversation because people are not so focused upon eating an entire meal that is set before them." (Wikipedia)
Because we have tapas parties every once in a while, I try to make them special. We use special serving platters and lay out a spread: cubed cheese, spreadable cheese, crackers, sliced fruit, sweet potato chips, grapes, dried fruit, and small bundles of deli meat served with a tooth pick. The idea is to serve everything on the platter in small portions. The kids love choosing their favorite things from the variety of foods and adding to their plate as they go. I can tell that my children are more excited about even ordinary foods when it is served for a "tapas party."
Try it out yourself. Let the kids help pick out the serving platter, the special plates, and the foods that will be featured in that particular day's tapas party. They can help assemble or cut the bite size food before the platter makes it to the table.
These are definitely our favorite and most memorable lunches.
I'll see you Monday after the big event! Cross your fingers for me. I'll definitely be sharing the day with you then.
the sleepy time gal