This spinach and green olive tapenade looks as good as it tastes; let’s face it — black olive tapenade might be yummy, but it isn’t very pretty. The olives would be enough for eye appeal, but spinach or arugula gives this classic spread a fresher, greener flavor and color.
Tapenade, an appetizer of Provençal origin, is basically a spread made of finely chopped or pureed olives. It’s is a perfect go-to appetizer for last-minute guests, as it’s so super-easy and quick to make.
The greens mellow out the briny olives in the best kind of way. Serve with sliced fresh Italian or French bread, bruschetta, or unsalted whole-grain crackers.
How to make bruschetta
Bruschetta, is basically fresh baguette or Italian bread, sliced and oven toasted until crisp. It’s a classic accompaniment for spreads like this one. Use whole-grain bread for added goodness. You’ll need:
- 1 long fresh baguette or Italian bread (not too skinny)
- Olive oil cooking spray or extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large clove garlic, halved
1 Preheat the oven to 350º F.
2 Cut the bread into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Arrange in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet and spray the tops lightly with cooking oil spray or brush lightly with olive oil.
3 Bake the bread slices for 7 minutes, then turn them over, spray or brush lightly again, and continue to bake for 5 to 7 minutes longer, or until golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
4 When cool enough to handle, rub one side of each toast with the cut side of the garlic. Serve in a napkin-lined bowl or basket with a spread of choice.
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- 1 cup pitted brine-cured green olives (not pimiento; see note)
- 1/2 chopped walnuts
- 2 to 3 big handfuls of baby spinach or baby arugula (2 to 3 ounces)
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley or cilantro leaves
- A few basil leaves, optional
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice, or to taste
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Combine all the ingredients in a food processor with about 2 tablespoons of water. Pulse on and off until everything is finely and evenly chopped. If need be, add a little more water to help the mixture come together. You can leave some texture, or make it smoother, like a puree, as you prefer.
- Transfer to a small serving bowl and serve with the desired accompaniments. Store any unused portion in an airtight container in the refrigerator, where it will keep for at least a week.
Pick up some pre-pitted olives at your supermarket’s olive bar. Try finding olives that are gently brined rather than super tart and salty.
Variation: If you’re going to be using this right away, add half an avocado to the mixture in the food processor for an extra mellow yumminess.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 83Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 473mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 1g
Nutrition data is always an estimate depending on program used to calculate and exact products used.
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