The Gilda: White anchovies, guindilla pepper and green olives

Popular bar snack: The Gilda.
Popular bar snack: The Gilda. Photo: Marina Oliphant

In Spain's Basque region, food on a stick is a popular bar snack, called pintxo. The Gilda is a classic version, with pickled guindilla peppers, white anchovies, and green olives on a toothpick. I have added a piece of tomato and the combination is fantastic with a beer.


4 roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cut into 2cm chunks

1 tsp sweet smoked paprika

12 white anchovies

1 handful flat-leaf parsley

12 guindilla peppers*

125g tinned Spanish olives stuffed

with anchovies

Extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle

Sea salt, to sprinkle

*Guindilla peppers are Spanish chillies, long and narrow with a slight curve. They are medium-hot with a sweet flavour and are sold green, pickled in white wine vinegar. You can buy them from good specialist delicatessens.


Dust the tomato chunks with paprika. Drain the anchovies. Place five whole fresh parsley leaves on an anchovy, then loop the fish over to form a horseshoe shape. Skewer a guindilla onto one end of the toothpick. Follow with the anchovy, a piece of tomato and finish off with a stuffed olive. Repeat with remaining anchovies, guindillas, tomato and olives. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and then sprinkle with sea salt.