This Provençal dish highlights some of my favorite ingredients. It's all about the olives, capers and olive oil. Add a clove of garlic and a few anchovy fillets and it's complete. There are as many variations of tapenade as there are variations of olives. And some recipes featuring roasted peppers or mushrooms or other finely chopped vegetables are called tapenade. But for now, we're starting with about a cup and a half of olives. I use a typical mix of green and black varieties but I always make sure I include those small, wrinkled, oil-cured olives. They have an obvious fruitiness that rounds out the tapenade.
I use a smallish clove of garlic, a couple teaspoons of capers (not the juice) and about 4-6 anchovy fillets (rinsed). Everything goes into the food processor with a long drizzle of olive oil. I pulse this until it reaches at least the consistency you see in the photos. Sometimes I process it smoother.
Tapenade packs a punch of flavor. It's salty and, well, olivey (a new word). A little goes a long way. We use it on toasted homemade bread spread with a little chevre. I use it on sandwiches, on crackers, as stuffing for chicken breasts, even a tablespoon or two can go into a pasta sauce. Try it!