Ahhh my love for olives runs deep. This lemony Mixed Olive Tapenade is so on the mark. Bright with lemon juice and zest, the pitted Kalamata and Castelvetranos shine in this perfectly blended mix. The simplicity of this combo is easy peasy and once made it keeps in the fridge for about 2 weeks. Here, in our house, it lasts three days as we devour it as soon as it’s made. One of my favorite ways to eat this is with goat cheese..either on a cracker, bread or whatever, but the cheese/olive combo is a tastebud party. 💃🏻 Another favorite is with my Whipped Feta and Yogurt Dip and toasted pita.
This recipe excludes Anchovies. While I don’t mind them at all, I recently developed an allergy to fish, so I wanted to add the punch of flavor that anchovies pack without them. Answer, extra capers, lemon zest and juice. I think you will love this Mixed Olive Tapenade and agree that you won’t miss the anchovies.
What is in traditional olive Tapenade?
Traditional tapenade includes a mix of pitted, oil cured olives, fresh herbs, capers, anchovies and tuna. Yes, the recipe for tapenade dates back to 1880’s when it was created by a chef in Marseille, France. Modern tapenade is mostly olives, capers, anchovies and dried or fresh herbs.
Kalamata Olives & Castelveltrano Olives
Kalamata olives are Greek black olives with a more oily texture. They are grown in the Peloponnese Peninsula in Greece and aptly named after the city of Kalamata. These are by far my favorite olives. I always have them in my home and add them to salads or just eat them as a snack. One of my favorite uses of Kalamata olives is in this Mixed Olive Tapenade. Next to that Castelvetrano olives, that are fresher, brighter green and are Sicilian in origin. The combination of these olives makes an incredible green and black olive tapenade. A perfect match!
How to Make Mixed Olive Tapenade
The easiest and tastiest condiment to make is this one. And honestly, so versatile. Tapenade is always on our appetizer table because it’s a crowd pleaser.
In a food processor bowl, place pitted olives, 2 fresh cloves of garlic, zest of half a lemon, squeeze of lemon juice, pinch of pepper and 3 tbsp of drained capers.
Through the food processor feed tube, add some of the olive oil, pulse, and repeat. Continue to repeat until you have a desired consistency. If you use oil cured pitted olives you may need just a tablespoon or so of olive oil. For water cured pitted olives (recommended), add 1/4 cup of olive oil. I prefer to have an even and finer consistency with my tapenade for versatility of use.
Uses for Olive Tapenade
Olive tapenade has many uses. Outside of serving it as a starter or appetizer, it’s truly a versatile condiment. Below are a few ways we enjoy it around our table.
- Addition to a charcuterie board
- On toasted baguette with goat cheese or ricotta
- Tossed with arugula and a little olive oil
- Top cooked chicken breast with a little mixed olive tapenade for some added flavor
- Toss with some cooked pasta and parmesan cheese
- Use it in pasta salad
- Use it as a spread in a sandwich (perfect for a vegetarian sando!)
- As a homemade pizza topping and some fresh mozzarella
- Mix with mayonnaise for a killer aioli
- Make compound butter to spread on warm bread
- Serve with Whipped Feta & Yogurt Dip for the ultimate indulgence
Tips for Making Mixed Olive Tapenade
Tapenade keeps for two weeks in the refrigerator in a container with a lid.
Our favorite ways of eating tapenade is with goat cheese and crackers. Second to this is with our Whipped Feta and Yogurt Dip, and toasted pita bread. This is also perfect in a veggie sandwich to give an extra punch of flavor. Mixed Olive Tapenade is also great with hummus and crispy veggies to dip into.
Yes, most olives work. I highly suggest a mix of good quality olives that are either water or oil cured (olive bars are perfect) that are not stuffed. Picholine, Nicoise. Sevillano or Mammoth Black. The more flavor forward olives you use, the better the tapenade. If you use oil cured, pitted olives, reduce the addition of olive oil considerably.
For me, the olives and capers have enough. If you want to add salt, I would add a tiny pinch of Kosher salt. I recommend trying the tapenade first and then adding the salt.
Top with a small amount of finely chopped flat leaf parsley upon serving.
Let me know what your favorite use of Mixed Olive Tapenade is. Comment below!
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Mixed Olive Tapenade – Anchovy free
- food processor
- 1/2 cup Castelvetrano olives pitted, water cured
- 1 cup Kalamata olives pitted, water cured
- 3 tbsp capers drained
- 2 cloves garlic fresh, peeled
- 1/2 lemon zest of half a lemon
- 1/4 cup olive oil extra virgin
- lemon juice fresh, squeeze of
- pinch pepper fresh ground
- In a food processor bowl, place pitted olives, 2 fresh cloves of garlic, zest of half a lemon, squeeze of lemon juice, pinch of pepper and 3 tbsp of drained capers.
- Through the food processor feed tube, add some of the olive oil, pulse, and repeat.
- Continue to repeat until you have a desired consistency. I prefer to have an even consistency with my tapenade for versatility.
- Remove from food processor bowl and place in container with tight fitting lid.
- Will keep refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Nutritional information is calculated online and should be used as a guide.
All content and photographs ©Claudia’s Table and claudiastable.com