Provencal Tapenade

When I traveled to Italy in March of 2006 I returned home with a love of olive pate'. Black and green... they were both alright in my book! Since then I've tried to match the amazing flavor I had one evening in a restaurant in Rome but I haven't quite gotten it 'right'. Here is a recipe I found from Food & Wine Magazine. Not quite it either (my version didn't have anchovies, tuna, capers or cognac in it) but sounded so good and that it must be added to my collection.

Provençal Tapenade

The best olives to use for a proper tapenade are naturally the ones Provençal cooks use: black Niçoise. In a pinch, however, any top-quality black olives can be combined with capers and anchovies to make this rustic spread.

  • 1 1/2 cups Niçoise olives (10 ounces), pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup drained capers
  • 1/4 cup drained tuna
  • 2 oil-packed anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon Cognac (optional)
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Grilled or toasted bread, for serving

    The Tapenade can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving. In a food processor, combine the olives with the capers, tuna and anchovies. Pulse until a coarse purée forms. With the machine on, gradually add the oil until incorporated. Transfer the Tapenade to a bowl and stir in the Cognac. Season with pepper and serve with grilled bread. Makes about 1 1/3 cup
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