Olive and Fig Tapenade
Makes about 2 cups
Sweet figs, salty olives, and briny capers combine in Fig Tapenade to form a deliciously vibrant spread. I made it this morning, enjoyed Fig Tapenade and Rosemary Bread for lunch, and brought the rest to a New Year’s Eve party tonight. The best thing about Fig Tapenade is it’s very easy to make: ingredients are tossed into a food processor and processed until smooth. The flavor comes from good ingredients, not hard work. Serve Fig Tapenade on its own with crusty bread, or dressed up, as I did tonight, with Garlicky Goat Cheese Spread and Garlic Toasts. Although it’s tempting to use pitted olives (and Fig Tapenade with pitted olives is tasty), their flavor isn’t as good as olives with pits. To easily pit Kalamata olives, spread them out on a cutting board and quickly smash each olive with a meat pounder or other heavy object. After being pounded, the pits slip right out. If you can’t find black mission figs, any dried figs will work for Fig Tapenade.
1 cup dried figs, preferably black mission
1 1/2 cups Kalamata olives
2 Tbsp. capers
1 Tbsp. dried thyme, crushed
1 Tbsp. minced fresh rosemary
1 Tbsp. chopped garlic
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
Cut off any stems and cut figs into quarters. Rinse, drain, and dry olives and capers. Remove pits from olives.
Place all ingredients except olive oil in food processor, and process until ingredients are chopped into small pieces. While machine is running, pour in olive oil and continue processing until ingredients form a smooth paste. Scrape down sides of bowl and process again. Place in glass container and refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving.