Sunday, October 24, 2010

French Olive Fig Tapenade with Cheese ~ A Recipe

We discovered this combination of flavors a couple weeks ago and have since devoured two large batches of it.  Salty olives.  Sweet figs.  Creamy cheese.  The garlic.  The garlic.  Just writing the word garlic makes my mouth water.  A special thank you to the cayenne for a subtly spicy finish.  I am in love, I tell you.

We've found the best results when using fresh herbs and chilling the olive mixture overnight or at least for a few hours to allow the flavors mingle a little.

French Olive Fig Tapenade with Cheese
Serves 6
Prep time: 20 minutes (also allow to chill for a few hours- overnight)

1 cup dried figs or 1 pint fresh figs, chopped
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup white wine
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon powdered cayenne pepper
2/3 rounded cup kalamata olives, chopped
3 small cloves garlic, seeded and minced
Celtic sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/3 cup walnut pieces
8 oz. feta or cream cheese (we suggest feta)
  1. Bring figs, water, wine, rosemary, and thyme to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from heat and add all remaining ingredients but the walnuts and cheese.  Stir well.  Cover and chill anywhere from 3 hours to overnight.
  2. Heat oven to 350 degrees.  On stoneware (preferred) or a baking sheet, bake walnuts for 10 minutes or until slightly browned.  Set aside.
  3. Before serving, place cheese on platter.  If using cream cheese, squish it down to about a 1/2 inch thick circle.  If using feta, crumble it and loosely bunch it together to about the same size. 
  4. Combine walnuts and olive mixture.  Spoon it over the cheese and serve with crackers, French bread, and/or or vegetable slices.
Squishing the cream cheese.

Not too worried about a perfect circle.

Eat me.  Eat me noooooowwww!
~Browse more riddlelove recipes here.~

I'm sharing this at the Gluten-Free Parade, Real Food 101.


  1. oh. be still. my heart. Must have. PRONTO!

  2. OMG, I could eat this ALL DAY LONG! Just saying garlic makes my mouth water, too...this is my kinda food right here! Although, I was expecting to see it scattered on top of some pancakes... 8)! LOL. Thanks for sharing this with the hearth and soul hop this week...I'll be dreaming of it for days to come!

  3. Thank you for sharing, we love olives, GARLIC (just made beet soup with 2 garlic bulbs last night), figs (the best we've eaten are in southern italy off the tree!) and sheep feta cheese. So I'm sure this would taste wonderful all together!

  4. Oh my, this sounds wonderful! I've never had tapenade with figs in it - it sounds incredible.

  5. This looks incredible. If I were there, I'd definitely eat that now.

  6. I am not an olive fan - but you are so tempting me with your words, your ingredients and your pictures! thanks for sharing with the Hearth and Soul Hop!

  7. wow! i don't know if i would have put all these flavors together...but it looks absolutely delicious...and i trust you when you say it is! i will definitely have to try this recipe soon. thank you for sharing this with tuesday night supper club!

  8. The only way i like olives is in tapenade and with figs - sold!

  9. This is amazing! I've tried it with both feta and cream cheese. Feta has a cool taste, but the cream cheese was SO CREAMY! This was a real hit paired with the rest of the white wine from the recipe. Thanks!

  10. This recipe is right up my alley! Have saved the link because I want to make this over Christmas - thanks for sharing it!

  11. Sounds like the perfect combination of all my favorites!

  12. This sounds great!
    I live in the south of France and I have never seen this combo but it looks scrumptious! I've got everything for it so it looks like I'll be making this dip very soon. Thanks for the recipe!

  13. ihi katie,:)m vegan do you think this recipe would be good without the cheese?

  14. Yes, I think it'd still be tasty without cheese. :)


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