Walk around any market in Provence or the Côte d’Azur and you will see stalls heaped with glistening olive pastes and tapenades, usually next to an enormous array of different olives and other pickles.
Tapenade is a typically southern dish made with olives, capers, anchovies and olive oil, chopped finely or blended together into a paste. Its name comes from the Provençal word for capers, “tapenas“.
It’s simple to make your own tapenade, varying the amount of each ingredient to suit, but with such a vast choice of delicious ones available in markets, speciality stores and ordinary grocers around here I always have a pot or two of “ready-made” on the go in my fridge. Within a 10 minute drive we have an award-winning producer in Le Rouret and an olive mill in Opio both of which create delicious tapenades.
Tapenade is a staple ingredient for a southern apéro, just spread on slices of baguette, but my favourite thing to do with it is to make “snails”. Using a roll of ready-made puff pastry, you spread the tapenade all over then roll up from both sides to the middle. In order to slice it thinly I pop it in the freezer for 30 mins, just enough to harden a little but not actually freeze. Now slice into slightly less than 1 cm slices, lay out on a baking tray covered in greaseproof paper and bake for 10-15 minutes at 180°c. It couldn’t be easier and these provençal “snails” never fail to impress.
If you’d like to discover more delicious local foods take a look at Top 8 must-try foods from Provence
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Thanks Irene!! 🙂
So easy, and always so well appreciated! 🙂
Michele, I often use tomato or regular pesto too, or one side in one colour and the other side contrasting. Thanks for stopping by.
Gosh, those snails are the prettiest tapenade are the prettiest presentation I have ever seen!
The ‘snails’ do look impressive, Phoebe! I’ll have to give it a try one of these days, yes with tapenade. I used to have a bottle in my fridge as well, have to get more!
Thanks for linking up this week and sharing such a delicious treat.
I’ve never made tapenade before. Living in Malaysia, good olives are difficult to find, so I won’t even try making some until I’m back in the USA. Those snails look delicious. I used to do something similar, making pinwheels out of puff pastry and sun-dried tomato pesto.
Do try it Jill, it really is easy and so delicious!
I hope you got some Jen!
Give it a go Thomas!
This looks interesting! I’m no cook but I think I could give this a whirl! Thanks 🙂
Yummmmm…I love tapenade!!! You’re making me hungry. Now I want some!!!
They look so yummy, Phoebe! And the snails too 🙂
Tapenade snails, sounds like a real winner to me. I must try them. Thanks for the idea.
Hi Jeff, thanks for your comment. It’s true you can’t really taste anchovy in the tapenade, it just helps give it a little kick. It certainly doesn’t taste fishy! 😮
I hope you enjoy trying out these ideas Jenny, you’re in the right part of the world that’s for sure.
Looks super tasty. Love the pictures! I’m not a huge fan of anchovies but maybe it isn’t bad with all the other ingredients.
Mmmmm. Sounds fantastic! We’re currently living in Portugal, so have a wonderful variety of fresh olives grown locally. Thank you for the excellent recipe ideas!