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San Jacobo Tapa Recipe


San Jacobo (c)

San Jacobo

Lisa Sierra (c) 2009 Licensed to About.com Inc.
A "San Jacobo" is a popular "merienda" (afternoon snack) or tapa in Spain. It consists of a slice of cheese between 2 slices of cooked ham, which is breaded and then fried. It is delicious when the outside is crispy, while the cheese inside melts between the slices of ham. Could the "San Jacobo" be Spanish fast food? It's delicious, easy to prepare and economical. Sounds like the perfect snack for beginning cooks or college students looking to prepare something different.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 8 slices (about 4" x 4") of cooked ham
  • 4 thin slices cheese
  • 1/2 cup unbleached white flour
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 8 oz (1/4 liter) olive oil for frying


This San Jacobo tapa recipe makes 4 servings as an appetizer or snack.

Ingredient Notes: Ham slices should not be paper thin. The slices should be thick enough to handle without tearing while handling. Use any soft cheese that melts easily, such as Swiss, etc.)

Lay 4 slices of ham on clean work area or counter. Lay a cheese slice on each ham slice and another slice of ham on top.

Break the eggs into a medium size bowl or a small, open baking dish with a flat bottom. Add water to eggs and beat with a wire whip.

Put flour and bread crumbs onto a dinner plate and mix together.

Pour enough oil into a medium frying pan to completely cover the bottom. Heat on medium. When oil is hot, bread the ham and cheese: Dip the ham and cheese into the beaten egg and then dredge in the flour and bread crumb mixture.

Fry the San Jacobo in the oil until golden brown and turn over and fry on second side. Remove from the frying pan and place on a paper towel to drain.

Repeat the breading and frying with each of the other 3 San Jacobos. Serve hot accompanied by bread.

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