Thursday, January 5, 2012

The dual of crostini - tapenade vs. artichoke bruschetta

As per yesterdays post I will absolutely be provide the "recipe" for my mixed olive tapenade. These are two wonderful ways to top a crostini for a fabulous cocktail party. They also make delicious additions to celery ribs, sandwiches and are especially amazing when added to an omelet for a huge flavor punch! I  served these at an event a while back and people were just flipping for the bruschetta. A break from the traditional will always impress a crowd. 

If you're like me you respect recipes; love to read them, sometimes follow them, will even share them with your friends, but rarely do you NEED them to prepare something in your comfort zone.  When i'm grooving and cooking - not baking, just straight up throwing together a dish I can't be stifled by following directions, measuring, processing what happens next. If you're a seasoned enough cook you know there's a rhythm that just happens when you are making something with ingredients you love. These two dishes are the prefect examples. Your taste might be a little more of this and a little less of that. You really can't screw these up too bad. Unless your taste buds are shit and you have never tasted these flavors before. I have full confidence in my fabulous readers and your ability to make these dishes and make them delicious!

For the Olive Tempanade - use olives you like & do not add salt to this!
bitter crushed green olives - pitted (small amount)
black sun dried Moroccan olives - pitted (mall amount)
straight up large marinated briny green olives - any variety (majority)
black kalamata olives - pitted (medium amount)
garlic - crushed (few cloves)
red pepper flakes - optional (pinch)
lemon - juice and zest 
anchovy paste (2tbs)  or two - three filets 
capers - optional  (small amount if any)
small bunch parsley
black pepper - pinch
drizzle of olive oil - for good measure 

PREP: In a food processor pulse everything until desired texture - mine was super fine chopped (almost smooth). If you like more garlic add more... this goes for all ingredients. Let your favorite olive variety be the most prominent or the one you have the most of. Other herbs can be substituted such as rosemary or thyme. Just make sure all the olives are pitted or your going to have some issues.

For the Artichoke bruschetta
Marinated or canned artichokes - the ones in a jar from Costco are actually amazing
roasted red peppers - you can find them pre roasted at antipasto bars, canned or jarred
roasted garlic (a few cloves) - if you have the time if not raw will do - just use less!
lemon - juice & zest
parsley - large handful
thyme - optional dry or fresh
pinch of s & p
drizzle of evoo

COOK: To roast garlic, slice the tips of the tops off (that's right!) drizzle with evoo s & p, wrap in tin foil and roast at 350 until golden and tender (about 40-50 mins).  If you are roasting your own peppers and have a gas stove awesome - char those babies right on the gas until blackened, then place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap until cool. Peel off the skins and then marinate with s & p, evoo, thyme, lemon juice, red pepper flakes a splash of vinegar, pin of oregano etc... make them taste good, damn it! If you are using pre marinated peppers, re purpose them by placing them on a baking tray and roast them further for another 20 mins or so (at 350). 
PREP: Thinly slice the roasted red pepper. Then in a food processor pulse the remaining ingredients - this should remain quite chunky.


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Thanks for your two cents. I love change!