Thursday, February 12, 2009

Pasta with Olive Tapenade

Here's another quick recipe if you don't have a lot of time on the weeknights. I saw it recently on Serious Eats. I have had a jar of kalamata olives in my refrigerator for longer than I care to admit. This dish basically takes as long as it takes to bring the water to a boil and cook the pasta. I decided to add a little more Mediterranean flair to it with some of the unbelievable feta I picked up at the farmers market. I wish you could all have some of this feta. It is so creamy. I have never had anything like it. The tapenade is really good. I wish I had made a little more of it to go on the pasta. It's kind of hard to tell, but it really did a go throughout the whole dish, but I wanted more for spreading on bread or crackers. You really want to go light on the salt in this dish and perhaps only use salt in the water for the pasta. Also, since I used the red pepper flakes (just a small pinch, I am still recovering from the chipotle shrimp), I left out the ground black pepper. I love my mini food processor for small jobs like this...well, really any jobs that require a food processor since I don't have a full sized one, but anyway, I think I am going to be making some more tapenade this weekend...

Pasta with Olive Tapenade
(Adapted from Real Fast Food: 350 Recipes Ready-to-Eat in 30 Minutes as found on Serious Eats)

2 tablespoons pitted kalamata olives
1/2 teaspoon capers
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
Olive oil as needed
Red pepper flakes (optional)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/2 pound long pasta, like spaghetti
Small pat of butter
Ground pepper (optional)
Crumbled feta (optional)

Bring a pot of salted water to boil, and cook the pasta until al dente.

In the meantime, combine the olives, capes, oregano, and a little olive oil in a mini food processor or mortar and pestle. Blend or smash until well-combined into a paste. Add more olive oil if needed, aiming for a loose paste. (If you'd like to add a little chili, cook chili flakes over low heat in the olive oil, then add to the rest of the ingredients).

Drain the pasta, reserving some cooking water, and toss in a serving bowl with the olive paste and chopped parsley. Add the butter and toss until melted. If the pasta is dry, use a little pasta water or more olive oil to loosen it. Top with crumbled feta if desired and serve immediately.

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Anonymous said...

Simple pasta dishes are my favorites! This looks fantastic.

Diana said...

Mmmm love feta... that sounds divine!

As for the olive tapenade? I'll keep my opinions to myself. ;)

The Food Librarian said...

Seriously, you kill me everyday with your yummy food. Looking for a roommate who would do your dishes for food?! :)

Esi said...

Thanks Sara!

Diana, haha, yes I know how you feel about olives. The feta is amazing though!

FL, sure! You could make yummy desserts and I will cook! :)

Anonymous said...

oh wow how I love your recipes! How do you have so much creativity in ya? Your pasta dish with the fried egg on top TOTALLY completed my valentines day meal idea for this saturday. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!

Anonymous said...

I love how this dish could easily be made on a weeknight. It probably takes less time than ordering take-out pizza!

Dee said...

This looks seriously good. I make my own tapenade but have never added capers to the mixture. Am going to try that next time :)

Heather said...

i love tapenade! i've never thought of adding it to pasta, but it's a wonderful idea!! and i love that you put feta with it :)

Anonymous said...

What a delightful combination. I adore that slightly acidic tang of feta too.

veggie belly said...

I will sell my soul for olive tapenade. Im ridiculously obsessed with olives. This is the perfect recipe for me! Infact, I just opened a bottle of olive tapenade I brought back from Argentina. Its going on pasta tomorrow, thanks for the idea :))

Anonymous said...

Yummy monday night dinner. I went a little bit overboard with the black olives. I love the combo of the salty olive caper mix with the crumbly feta. A very light and refreshing meal!

Esi said...

Marty, I am so glad you liked it! I ended up making more tapenade the next day...some to go with the leftovers and some to just snack on.