Tapenade is an olive spread originating from Provence. During our travels through Europe, we stopped for a few days at my Gran’s home in the South of France. She cooked delicious meals for us, inspired by the seasons and the region she lives in. I observed her making tapenade and took note of the recipe.
A few month later (a week ago), my parents came to visit us in Exeter. It was the first time they came since we moved here, and on the first evening, I made these verrines as appetisers after having prepared tapenade. We had a wonderful time together. It was a real pleasure to show them where we live and give them a glimpse of our beautiful region. We had a busy program, every day going to different places from beautiful St Ives in Cornwall, to a long walk along the Exe Estuary or a boat cruise on the river Dart where we encountered an Atlantic grey seal. I wanted to make them taste local specialities – opportunities to eat out were plenty and we ate local crab and mussels, Devonshire Cream Tea and traditional pub food.
Most evenings, they came home for dinner. I cooked this salad and these tartines (replacing the fromage blanc with tapenade). We had this risotto, rhubarb and strawberry crumble, fruit salads, and a cheese and wine tasting evening with local cheeses: creamy Stilton, Taw Valley Tasty, Cornish Yarg and Somerset Brie.
As usual, food was at the centre of all these lovely times spent together, creating memories. I was so happy to have them around.
Tapenade, Tomato and Mozzarella Verrines – makes 4 verrines
• A handful of black olives, pitted
• 1 anchovy in olive oil
• 1 small clove of garlic
• 1tsp capers
• 3 basil leaves + 4 small leaves for decoration
• 1 tomato, seeded and very finely chopped
• ½ ball buffalo mozzarella, finely chopped
• Black pepper
• Olive oil
1. Start by preparing the tapenade: put the olives, the anchovy, the capers, the garlic and the three basil leaves in a blender and blend for a few seconds. The tapenade is ready!
2. Put two teaspoons tapenade in a very small glass (verrine), add a layer of tomatoes and finally a layer of mozzarella. Season with black pepper. Drizzle a bit of olive oil and add a small basil leaf to decorate. Repeat the process with the three other verrines.
Verrines à la Tapenade, Tomate et Mozzarella – pour 4 verrines
• Une poignée d’olives noires, dénoyautées
• 1 anchois à l’huile d’olive
• 1 petite gousse d’ail
• 1cc de câpres
• 3 feuilles de basilic + 4 petites feuilles pour la décoration
• 1 tomate, dont on aura retiré les pépins, finement émincée
• ½ boule de mozzarella de buffle
• Poivre noir
• Huile d’olive
1. Préparer la tapenade. Mixer finement les olives avec l’anchois, les câpres, l’ail et les three feuilles de basilic. La tapenade est prête !
2. Mettre deux cuillérées à café de tapenade dans une verrine. Ajouter des dés de tomate, puis des dés de mozzarella. Assaisonner avec du poivre et un filet d’huile d’olive. Décorer avec une feuille de basilic. Répéter avec les trois autres verrines.