Sunday, February 6, 2011

Recipe: Black Olive - Fig Tapenade

Oh yes, oh wow, oh yum! I found this recipe on my friend LIz's blog Liz on Food a few days ago and knew I needed to make it (and make it soon!). I love Black Olive Tapenade and have a favorite recipe on my website that I have made over and over again. It also is one of the two most viewed recipes on my website (Tabouli is the highest viewed recipe year after year). However, sob sob sob, I have had to nearly give up eating all salty foods because of the heart problems I have developed as late effects from my multiple cancer therapies.

As I looked at Liz's recipe, I realized that it likely had approximately half the sodium that a traditional tapenade would have since figs replaced a significant amount of the olives. So I decided to give it a try for a gathering of a few of my neighborhood women friends this afternoon.

This dish completely lived up to my expectations. I still cannot "pig out" of course, but I felt content knowing I could easily make and consume a small amount of this tapenade variation. Thanks, LIz!

I served it with crackers and vegetables first but then spread a small amount along with some left over fresh vegetables over some pieces of halibut that I baked in the oven earlier this evening (about 1 Tbsp. per piece of halibut).  I don't have a pix of the fish, but some photos of the tapenade follow.

Black Olive - Fig Tapenade

15 Black Olives (pitted) - I used Kalamata
5 Dried mission figs (cut into quarters)
2 cloves garlic
1/3 cup walnuts (or any type of nut - I actually used pecans)
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

I used my mini-food processor to make this.
1) Combine nuts and garlic - chop a bit
2) Add olives - chop a bit more
3) Add dates - chop a bit more
4) Add olive oil and chop until well mixed but not pureed

Best made ahead so the flavors have time to thoroughly blend. Serve at room temperature.

(Photo: Black Olive - Fig Tapenade, made in a mini-food processor)

(Photo: Black Olive - Fig Tapenade served with rice crackers and fresh vegetables)
This recipe can easily be doubled. It is simple plus tasty and likely to be different from most anything else you've eaten. Liz actually used dates instead of figs, which I think might taste too sweet for me, but adding figs was just perfect! How would you use this tapenade?

"Cultivate your life - you are what you grow - inch by inch, row by row"

Diana Dyer, MS, RD

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