We like to think that we came up with this great duo. Tapenade is something that we always have in our refrigerators because it lasts forever and it is an instant appetizer for on the fly entertaining. It tastes great on toasted baguette slices, but we think the tartness of the apple plays off the salty herbal notes of the tapenade to delicious effect. The green, black and white colors also look great on a plain white serving tray (very minimalist.)Makes 48 pieces
1-1/2 cups Kalamata olives, pitted
3/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon anchovy paste (more or less optional)
1/4 cup capers (preferably those packed in salt), rinsed
Zest of 1 lemon (yellow part only)
Zest of 1 orange (orange part only)
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Granny Smith apples, halved cored and each sliced into 16 slices
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Lemon wedges and parsley leaves as garnish (optional)
Place the olives, sun dried tomatoes, garlic, anchovy paste, capers, zests, lemon juice, parsley, herbes de Provence, black pepper, and olive oil in the bowl of a food processor (or chop finely by hand and mix). Pulse a few times to incorporate and chop to desired texture (we like it chunky.)
Toss the apples with the lemon juice to keep them from browning. Spread a small mound of tapenade onto each of the sliced apples and arrange them decoratively on a platter. Garnish with lemon wedges and bunches of parsley.
Make-ahead: You may refrigerate the tapenade covered for up to 2 weeks. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Tips: It is easy to remove the pits from the olives. Simply lay the flat side of your knife
on the olive and press. The olive opens up and out pops the pit.
Capers packed in salt have a better texture than those bottled in brine. They must be rinsed thoroughly before using.
The zest from the citrus is most easily removed using a microplane, available at most cookware stores.