(NAPSA) - Originally a Spanish tradition, tapas dining, which includes sampling and sharing a variety of bite-sized dishes, has become a hot new trend around the world. Tapas, from the Spanish verb 'tapar,' means 'to cover,' and a tapa was originally a snack placed on top of a drink to protect it while dining outdoors.
Dining tapas style is a creative way to enjoy food with friends and family, allowing for many different taste experiences and combinations. Tapas parties are a unique and deliciously fun way to entertain. Dishes are generally simple, combining small portions of grilled meats, vegetables or seafood with slices of olives, cheese or bread. Add a frosty pitcher of sangria, and you're ready to serve your guests some of Spain's tasty tapas.
Each region of Spain has its own tapas specialty. For example, if you were taking in the stunning architecture of Seville, you might stop for a serving of freshly harvested Mediterranean fish paired with Manchego cheese stuffed olives.
Don't be afraid to experiment with different topping combinations and see just how creative your tapas can be. For tempting tapas, companies such as The Pampered Chef have created the tools and recipes that will help you experience the pleasures of Spain right in your own kitchen.
Try The Pampered Chef's Garlic Shrimp Crostini or one of the variations listed below for easy but elegant tapas.