This deliciously salty condiment from Provence in France is perfect served as part of an aperitif spread, either with crackers or to fill a hard boiled egg. We often think of it as an ‘olive’ paste and while it contains olives, the word tapenade actually comes from the Provencal word for capers (tapenas).

Using a mortar and pestle to make this may require more work initially but I find it much easier in the clean-up process (food processors are such pesky things to wash I believe). The other reason I do this in a mortar and pestle is because this quantity is too small for a food processor. The quantities below yield about 1/2 cup and so if you are wanting to make more you could switch to a food processor and use the pulse function to blend everything together.

I have suggested Kalamata olives here but the traditional olives to use are Nyon olives. Sadly I haven’t been able to find any Nyon olives in Sydney (if anyone knows were I can get them please let me know in the comments below!). I strongly recommend buying un-pitted olives, the flavour is much better however if you can’t get your hands on any and you use pitted olives then you will need to adjust the weight to 85 g.

Makes about 1/2 cup worth
110 g Kalamata olives, pitted (or 85 g already pitted)
1 tbls capers in salt, rinsed and drained
2 anchovy fillets (if using fillets packed in salt then be sure to rinse well and pat dry)
1/2 garlic clove, germ removed
Leaves from one sprig of rosemary, chopped
30 ml olive oil

1. Place all of the ingredients except for the oil in a mortar and pestle.
2. Pound together for a few minutes to form a chunky paste.
3. Slowly drizzle in the oil, continuing to pound and stir the mixture until all of the oil is used up.

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