Planning for Tapas Monday

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | January 2nd, 2017 | Tasty Thoughts

glasses-of-champagne2For many years my husband and I have enjoyed a special dinner for two to start the workweek. It’s known in our house as Tapas Monday. The basics of the dinner are simple. Dinner is held a little bit later, about 8:00 or so. Typically the menu is comprised of tapas-style dishes, although we have been known to substitute soup, salad, or even an entrée, if we so desire. The dinner is accompanied by a bottle of sparkling wine, usually prosecco. Kids are not invited to the meal.

As the maker of most menus, I try to vary them. While we may have the same dish from time to time, I try to keep each week’s menu new and interesting. As such, I’m always on the lookout for an original dish. Interestingly, even though we are starting a two-week series on slow cooker dishes, two of those recipes were part of two different Tapas Monday menus. Crockpot cooking may not sound like a tapas worthy meal, but it really can be.

Outside of the food and beverage portion of our Tapas Monday routine, there’s another piece to our evening. Each of us creates a list of topics to discuss over our meal. Typically they’re based off of articles we’ve read, but the variety of subjects covered is vast. Sometimes these are short topics, more of an “Isn’t this interesting!” piece, while others are the starting point of a deeper discussion. The nice part of these lists is that we talk about subjects that may not be covered in the usual back and forth of dinner. You know, the regular review of our days, the kids, etc. Yes, those are fine topics, but it’s also nice to discuss items both deeper and more random.

As this article publishes, my husband and I are probably crafting our topics for tonight: he on a scrap of paper and me on my phone. Later tonight we’ll take our seats at a table set for two, with candles lit, and prosecco chilling. It’s bound to be yet another lovely Tapas Monday.

To get our first week of crockpot cooking started I have two classic Think Tasty recipes that are both tapas-worthy and prepared in a slow cooker.

You Decide How Hot Sausage Dip– The heat is easily adjusted by choosing the salsa and sausage with your preferred flavorings. Served with tortilla chips, it’s a delicious, indulgent snack.

Espinaca Dip– This recipe needs no explanation, right? Cheese and spinach with a bit of spice, it’s a favorite of many.

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