Recipes by Donna Desfor of There’s a Chef in My Kitchen

Classic Tapenade

(Makes about 1 1/4 cups)

1 heaping cup black olives (not Kalamata), pitted and drained

4 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons capers, drained

1 garlic clove, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

1 pinch cayenne pepper (or 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes)

1/4 cup fruity extra-virgin olive oil

Place all the ingredients except the olive oil in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse about 8 times to blend. Add about half the oil and pulse a few more times. Scrape down the sides and add just enough of the remaining olive oil to pulse into a cohesive but coarse paste.

Green Olive Tapenade

(Makes about 1 1/4 cups)

1 1/2 cups pitted green olives, drained

1/4 cup capers, drained

1/4 cup fruity extra-virgin olive oil

Place all the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse until the ingredients come together forming a cohesive but coarse paste. Add a drizzle of olive oil if the tapenade appears dry.

Pink Grapefruit Chutney

(Makes about 1 cup)

2 pink grapefruit, peeled and sectioned with juices

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

3 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 scant tablespoon orange zest

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and finely minced

Sea Salt, to taste

In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan combine the grapefruit sections and juice, the sugar, red pepper flakes and honey. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat and gently simmer until the fruit is broken down and most of the liquid is evaporated, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the lemon juice, the orange zest and the ginger. Allow to cool. Taste. Season with salt.

Tomato Onion Chutney

(Makes about 1 1/2 cups)

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup finely chopped sweet (Vidalia or Walla Walla) onion

3 garlic cloves, finely minced

2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped (to yield a scant 1/4 cup)

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon mustard powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 can (28 ounce) whole, peeled tomatoes, drained and diced

3/4 to 1 cup finely chopped candied (crystallized) ginger, to taste

1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, to taste

In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan heat the olive oil over medium heat. When shimmering, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 3 or 4 minutes. Add the garlic, the jalapeno and spices. Stir and cook for about 1 minute to release the aromatics. Add the wine and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add in the tomato (including any juices that have accumulated) and the candied ginger. Simmer uncovered for about 20 to 30 minutes until thick and jamlike. Season with salt. Serve warm or chilled.

Salsa Verde

(Makes about 1 1/2 cups)

3 to 4 (about 1 pound) tomatillos, husked, washed and coarsely chopped

1/4 cup sweet (Vidalia or Walla Walla) onion, coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped

1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves

Sea Salt to season

Place all the ingredients into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse about 10 times until finely chopped. Season with salt. Drain excess liquid before serving.

Banana Salsa

(Makes about 2 cups)

4 red bananas; firm but ripe (or substitute 2 yellow, firm but ripe bananas)

2 teaspoons jalapeno or other hot chili, seeded and finely chopped

2 green onions, white and light green parts only, finely chopped

1/4 cup red or green bell peppers (or a combination of both), seeded and finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon brown sugar (or to taste depending on the sweetness of your bananas)

1 teaspoon finely chopped crystallized ginger

2 teaspoons peanut, hazelnut, walnut, sesame or other nut oil

Chopped pecans, for garnish

Combine the ingredients in a medium, nonreactive bowl. Gently mix to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve within one hour to prevent banana from browning, or cover with cling film, pressing the film directly on the salsa, then cover in an airtight container.

Mixed Olive Relish

(Makes about 1 1/2 cups)

1 cup pimiento-stuffed green olives

2/3 cup pitted Kalamata olives

2 tablespoons capers, drained

1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon aged (or high quality) red-wine vinegar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Pinch dried Mediterranean oregano, crumbled between fingers

Pinch dried hot red pepper flakes

Granulated sugar, to season

Combine the olives and capers in a colander or sieve. Rinse well under cold running water. Place the rinsed and drained olives and capers into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the garlic, vinegar and lemon juice, and the spices. Pulse about 8 to 10 times, or until coarsely chopped. Taste. Season with sugar to balance the tang of the vinegar and lemon juice with the savory flavors of the olives and capers.

Tomato Onion Relish

(Makes about 1 1/2 cups)

1/2 red onion, finely chopped to yield about 1/2 cup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup cold water

1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

1 tablespoon aged (or high quality) red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

Chopped dill, to season

Combine the water and salt and add the chopped onion. Soak the onion for 15 minutes, then drain. In a medium bowl combine the onion, tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, and salt. Let stand until ready to serve. Drain relish in a sieve and turn out relish into a serving bowl. Season and garnish with chopped dill.


2 Responses to “Salsa, Chutneys and Tapenades”


  1. 1 afsana
    October 6, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Love the recipes!! Keep up the good work!! Yum….


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Bonjour!

In culinary school and getting ready to trade the writing life for the cooking life. Or not. Might do both. At the moment I'm a feature writer for The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa. My name is Pat Carroll.

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