Eggplant Olive Tapenade

Hello Readers!  Lately I've been on a bread making kick thanks to Caroline who introduced me to the book The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  So far I've made four loaves of Boule.  Mike and I have been using it for sandwiches, to dip into olive oil, and most recently we have eaten it with eggplant-olive tapenade.  This dip is quick and easy to make with the use of a food processor.  

For those of you who are unsure what tapenade is, it's a spread typically made from chopped or pureed olives, capers, anchovies, and olive oil.  Tapenades are popular in Provence, France where it's name is derived {means capers}, but per Wikipedia, olive-based tapenades appeared and are documented in Roman cookbooks about 1000 years prior to the French.

In this tapenade, eggplant is used and is featured as the main ingredient.  A tip to cut down on the eggplant's bitterness is to slice the eggplant in half, then sprinkle with salt prior to roasting.  After roasting, rinse with water and deseed.  I hope you enjoy this Mediterranean inspired appetizer! 

 

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Ingredients for Eggplant Olive Tapenade

  • 1- medium eggplant
  • 1 or 2 cloves of garlic
  • 6 oz of good quality olives (I used Kalamata and Castelvetrano)
  • 1 tbsp capers, drained
  • olive oil
  • juice of lemon (1/4 to 1/2 of lemon)
  • 2 anchovies

Directions for Eggplant Olive Tapenade

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Wash then cut eggplant lengthwise.  Salt flesh of eggplant.  Rub skin of eggplant with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and then place skin side up on a baking sheet. 
  3. Brush cloves of garlic lightly with olive oil.  Place on baking sheet with eggplant.
  4. Roast about 20 minutes until skin is brown and tender.
  5. Set aside to cool.  Rinse excess salt off eggplant.  Peel skin from eggplant and remove seeds.  Cut into 1/2 inch cubes.
  6. Push roasted garlic out of it's skin, set aside.
  7. Place all ingredients into a food processor.  Pulse until smooth.  Add olive oil, 1 tablespoon at a time, until moist.
  8. Serving suggestion: Place on serving dish or in a bowl.  Drizzle with olive oil and crumbled feta cheese.  Eat with Artisan Bread or pita.