Garlic Tapenade for Tapas

Yield: Approximately 1-1/2 cups of tapenade

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 head of elephant garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped (approximately 1/2 cup of chopped garlic)
  • 1 whole dried Sicilian red pepper, torn into flake-sized pieces
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup red wine vinegar (start with 1/4 cup and add more as needed to achieve the proper texture)
  • 1/4 cup water (artesian spring water), or as needed
  • 2 tablespoons Sicilian olive oil (or any excellent quality extra virgin olive oil)
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • Sicilian Seasoning from Merchant Spice Co.’s European Collection
  • Sea salt, to taste (NOTE: Sicilian sea salt is an excellent choice for this preparation.)

Preparation:

Place all ingredients in a food processor (starting with 1/4 cup of vinegar and adding more, as needed) and pulse until a fine, but still slightly textured, puree is achieved.

Your garlic tapenade is now ready for many, many glorious preparations and can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks.

To serve:

We prepared tapas using our garlic tapenade, along with other assorted tapas dishes. Here are some ideas.

  • Drizzle slices of European-style crusty artisan bread with olive oil and place briefly under the heat of a broiler. Remove from the oven and spread generously with garlic tapenade and once again place under the broiler until toasted and fragrant. Sprinkle with smoked Spanish paprika to serve.
  • Also on slices of bread prepared as mentioned above, spread the bread with creamy feta cheese and chopped Moroccan oil-cured black olives and place briefly under the broiler. On a cast-iron skillet, over high  heat, quickly pan fry slices of tomato that have been lightly salted with sea salt. Remove the cheese-topped bread from the oven and top with tomato.
  • Pan-seared whole artichokes with their stems are another fantastic tapas to accompany this meal. Simply slice the whole artichokes in half lengthwise and sear on a cast-iron skillet over high heat. Drizzle a bit of sunflower oil over the artichokes while searing, along with a pinch or two of sea salt (Merchant Spice Co.’s Lemon Seasoned Sea Salt works well) and a few squeezes of fresh lemon. Sear on both sides.

Olé!

 

 

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