A mezze platter isn’t complete without homemade tapenade to be served with seasonal veggies and crunchy crackers. While your classic tapenade includes Italian olives, our favorite way to make the spread is by quick roasting sweet red bell peppers and blending them with rich pine nuts and a bunch of fresh basil. It’s a cool dish for waning summer days.Print
Sweet roasted red bell peppers combined with toasted pine nuts and garlic makes for a perfectly cool spread for crackers, fresh veggies, and more.
4 red bell peppers, washed, dried, and quartered with core removed
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup tomato paste
3 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
Salt to taste
1. Preheat oven to 500° or turn on the broiler.
2. Set aside a medium-sized airtight container.
3. Place quartered red peppers onto a medium baking sheet that’s been lined with parchment paper. Drizzle peppers with olive oil.
4. Place the tray on the middle rack of the oven. Watch carefully as the peppers begin to blister and turn black, about 2-3 minutes Once blistered, remove tray from the oven.
5. Use tongs or a fork to peel and remove the skins, then transfer the skinned peppers to an airtight container. Cover and let sit for 30 minutes.
6. Meanwhile, use a small pan to dry roast garlic cloves and pine nuts over medium heat until lightly toasted, about 3 minutes.
7. When ready, transfer peppers, garlic cloves, pine nuts, tomato paste, and fresh basil into a food processor. Blend until combined. Season with salt to taste.
8. Transfer tapenade to a serving dish and pair with freshly cut vegetables, toasted baguette chunks, and crackers.