When it comes to bar snacks, Europe has the right idea: In Spain, its tapas and pintxos; in Italy, it’s cicchetti and aperitivo, the country’s jazzed-up version of happy hour. The folks across the pond have not only perfected the art of pairing light bites with wine and cocktails, but they’ve also ritualized the act of eating them—always in a leisurely fashion and in the company of close friends.
Bring a little dolce vita into your own home with these savory apps, which take cues from some of the richest culinary traditions in western Europe. They’re delicious and easy to make—plus, they’ll tide you over until you can finally take that hard-earned vacation to Basque Country.
Venetian cicchetti, Italy’s take on bar snacks, are meant to be consumed while standing at the bar, preferably with an aperitivo in hand. Bites like crostini, charcuterie and meatballs are common; meanwhile, salty morsels like fried mortadella-stuffed olives pair perfectly with Negronis.
The tortilla espanola—a frittata-style dish featuring potatoes, onions and eggs—is a classic Spanish tapas. Sliced into wedges and topped with a dab of paprika-spiked mayo, it’s a substantial, satisfying appetizer that pairs perfectly with a glass of sparkling cava. For a colorful twist, make yours with purple potatoes.
The love child of France’s butter-dipped radishes and all-American avocado toast. Try slathering toasted baguette rounds with plenty of European-style butter, then pile them high with crunchy rounds of fresh radishes, finished with coarse fleur de sel and a sprinkling of fresh herbs.
Crate and Barrel provided the product featured here and sponsored this post.
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