As you know my friends and I love to have themed Shabbats! Shabbat is the best holiday since it happens every week, but with that level of frequency it is fun to mix things up with different types of menus and decor.
On Friday we decided to mentally transport ourselves to Spain! My cousin and I co-hosted; we embraced a red, gold, and black color theme for a flamenco vibe, played Spanish guitar music, and enjoyed a Spanish-rich menu.
I designed a fun menu to act as part of the centerpiece – download a free printable of the menu here for your own Shabbat! We ended up serving 14 so we decided to have a lot of food options. We also wanted to keep things kosher style; since we chose to have meat on the menu we made sure none of the other dishes had any dairy. See below for links of all of the recipes 🙂
All of the decor came from crafting with Dollar Tree items – I used a hot glue gun to wrap red ribbons and gold pained doilies to glass vases, filled with red roses. I also got the gold frame for the menu there, along with the black table cloth, red napkins, and large sangria glasses.
Small tea candles scattered on the tables added that extra glow for mood lighting.
I wanted to add a little something extra to the table settings, so I printed different images of vintage Spanish flamenco posters. You can download the ones that I used here. If you want people to be able to claim their seat, have them find the poster that most calls to them and write their name on the back!
A mixed fruit, red wine and brandy Sangria stayed in tune with the red color scheme.
We started with a mix of olives, peppers, and artichoke (store bought), Turkey Bacon-wrapped Medjool Dates (which I especially loved since they really are only two ingredients and so easy to make), and Pa Amb Tomaquet. We followed with a Spanish Salad of Oranges, Fennel, Red Onion, and Mint (replacing the yogurt for the dressing with avocado) and Gazpacho.
Then we enjoyed some Patatas Bravas with a spicy tomato sauce and roasted garlic aioli, Tortilla Española (a Spanish Potato and Onion Omelette), and Paella (some with with chicken and steak and some without for the vegetarians of the group).
My cousin Erin was the ultimate chef master! She didn’t follow one Paella recipe exactly, but combined Ester’s Magic Paella from Food52 with FabFood’s Meat Paella, along with these helpful tips from World Market.
Here is the gist:
- Heat broth (4 or 8 cups) with 1 tsp saffron
- Cook garlic in oil, add onions and let caramelize
- Then add any other veggies you’re using; ours had leeks, green & red peppers, shiitake mushrooms, and tomatoes (using half a can of diced tomatoes with fresh ones)
- Add the meat and let cook and brown slightly
- Add the rice; mix it in to the veggie mix and make sure it’s evenly dispersed – then restrain yourself from stirring for the rest of the time – once rice is evenly mixed in you pour the broth over the entire pan and let simmer/cook
- Move to the oven for last 15 minutes
I recommend making the Vegan Leche Merengada before dinner so it fully chills in the fridge until you are ready to have it.
Not sure how we had room to eat these after having so much but they were delicious!