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Sun Dried Tomato Tapenade

sun dried tomato tapenade

This is the third of my “Food to Share” series, with the main ingredient inspired by this week’s heat wave tomato sun drying binge.  The heat wave ended yesterday, and the day was cool and misty rain all day. Lovely weather, but I had a tray of tomatoes semi-sun dried, nearly but not quite dry enough for me to feel comfortable storing them in oil.  My basic rule for storing things safely in oil is that if the food would store safely out of the oil, it’s fine.  So tomatoes dried to the leather stage, where, so long as they were kept dry they would not go mildewy, are fine. But semi-sun-dried tomatoes that would go off if they weren’t under oil, should be stored in the fridge, and even then not for too long.  Foods with a high acid content are safe for longer, and this tapenade would probably last for weeks, but the experiment will never get a chance to run in my household!

Everything on this platter is in glut in my garden at present:

  • Sliced fresh Roma and yellow tomatoes
  • Sliced fresh cucumber – the first of the Suyo Long.  The flavour is lovely, but I’ll wait to see how the plant performs before adding it to the favourites
  • Blanched Blue Lake beans
  • Chargrilled eggplant and tromboncino
  • Homemade polenta (I had some sweet corn that we didn’t get around to eating, and it had overmatured)
  • And the star – sundried tomato tapenade

Served with sourdough crostini.

 Sundried Tomato Tapenade Recipe:

In the food processor, blend together:

  • ½ cup sun dried tomatoes (dried to soft leather, not crisp)
  • 6 green olives, deseeded
  • 6 macadamia nuts, lightly toasted
  • ¼ cup fresh sweet basil
  • good tasting virgin olive oil -about 4 dessertspoons, but it will vary depending on how dry your tomatoes are

The flavour is intense and wonderful on crostini or chargrilled vegetables.  I can imagine it would go amazingly well with bocconcini too.  Or on Turkish bread as a base for a Mediterranean-style lunch roll.


{ 8 comments… add one }
  • ronnie January 21, 2013, 2:37 pm

    oh my! my mouth is watering on this one! and I loved your tale about using the dashboard as a solar dryer – brilliant! our garden is not happening this summer – its too dry and the heat has been intense (and for the last 2-3 weeks fire has been a constant worry) – so I’m also having a moment of vege garden envy…

  • Linda January 21, 2013, 2:39 pm

    Fire has been a worry here too, but nowhere near the level that it has been in many parts of the country. My thoughts are with you. I know how stressful it is.

  • cityhippyfarmgirl January 22, 2013, 2:43 pm

    Beautiful looking platter Linda. I would happily enjoy that for dinner tonight…and homemade polenta, oh yum!

  • celia January 23, 2013, 6:40 am

    Sounds delicious, Linda! We’ll try it next time we get a box of tomatoes at the market! 🙂

  • Jaime Schmidt February 19, 2013, 5:52 am

    My mind is blown thinking about making our own corn meal. What did you grind it with?

  • Linda February 19, 2013, 8:06 am

    Hi Jaime, sneak preview of the recipe (I’m going to make it again with the next batch of corn and take some proper photos and post it). One and a half cups of corn kernels stripped off the cob. I used sweet corn that had overmatured and dried on the cob. 4 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Pressure cook for 15 minutes, or boil for 45, then blend till quite smooth. Simmer for another 45 minutes, stirring regularly, till it is thick. Stir in a cup of grated tasty cheese, so it melts through. Spread in an oiled pan so it is about 3 cm deep and cool in the fridge to set. It will set remarkably quickly – 5 minutes in my fridge does it. Cut into fingers and fry the fingers in a little olive oil till golden and crunchy.

    You can go one step further, and nixamalize corn to make proper corn tacos, but you need to use proper maize for that, not sweet corn.

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