A simple homemade tapenade is a beautiful condiment to have on hand. This one is bright with lemons (2 teaspoons of lemon juice is nicely lemony, 3 teaspoons packs a serious citrusy punch), and such a total powerhouse of flavor that you will find yourself searching for all sorts of ways to incorporate it into a dish.
How to Use Olive Tapenade:
You can use this Green Olive Tapenade on crostini, for an instant sophisticated appetizer. Leave it plain, just a thick spread on a toasted piece of olive oil brushed toast, or top it with some fresh ricotta or mozzarella cheese.
Toss it with pasta, or work it into this creamy fettuccine alfredo tousled with blanched green beans. Dollop it over roasted cauliflower steaks, or even just roasted cauliflower florets.
Turn it into a vinaigrette and drizzle it over roasted carrots for the most beautiful spring side dish.
This beautiful, citrusy green olive tapenade packs a terrific salty flavor punch and has SO many great uses. You will find yourself searching for all sorts of ways to incorporate it into a dish, and it’s an instant appetizer when spread on crostini.Tweet This
Best Olives for Tapenade
Nutty and meaty Castelvetrano olives are bright green which give this tapenade a cheerful hue. You’ll probably have to pit them yourself, as they aren’t all that easily available pre-pitted. Worth it (especially if you have an olive pitter, which is kind of fun to use)—enlist the help of a willing partner or pal. To pit olives without a pitter, just place them on a cutting board and use the side of a big heavy knife to press down on them, carefully giving the knife a firm smack with the side of your fist. The olive will crack and then the pit can be popped out.
You can use other green olives, but your results will not be as vivid in color. Choices could be Picholine, Manzanilla or Cerignola, another one of my favorites. They vary in their level of saltiness, so make sure to taste the finished tapenade before adding any additional salt, and if you use the tapenade in a dish, adjust any added salt with that in mind. You can also use a combination of olives.
And if you prefer black olives, go for it—black olive tapenade is a classic Provencal or Mediterranean condiment.
What does tapenade taste like?
Tapenade tastes primarily like olives, and specifically the olives you are using. It’s a salty condiment, because of the olives, and also because many have capers or anchovies or both in the mix. Tapenades are often garlicky as well, though you can modify the amount of garlic in the recipe – this one has a fairly small amount; enough to taste, but not to be overpowering. They also may taste lemony, which is another common ingredient (and definitely used here in the below recipe!)
How Long Does Tapenade Last?
Tapenade lasts for at least two weeks in a covered container in the fridge. Use it by the spoonful as you need it. Toss it if it gets a whitish coating on the top, or starts to smell funky.
More Dips and Spreads Recipes:
- Seseame Oil Hummus Without Tahini
- Poached Salmon Spread
- Edamame Pesto Dip
- Perfect Whipped Fresh Ricotta
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Green Olive Tapenade
- 1 cup pitted Castelvetrano olives
- 2 anchovies rinsed and chopped
- ½ teaspoon minced garlic
- ¼ cup chopped coarse freshly parsley
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon drained capers
- 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
- 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice depending on how lemony you want it
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Place the olives, anchovies, garlic, parsley, olive oil, capers, lemon zest, and lemon juice in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is coarsely blended. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired. Continue to pulse or puree until the mixture is as coarse or fine as you like.
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