Olives with anchovies and tart feta cheese dip are hardly a romantic start to St. Valentines Day but I couldn't resist integrating two of our favorite things in to what has become an annual dinner in. Trying to be conscious of extras in the pantry and fridge I figured we could munch on this while the other courses were prepared and I must say this was one of the highlights of the evening. Served with a nice loaf of bread of pita chips, this is a great start to any dinner. I made a more traditional tapenade for New Years Eve a few years ago and most guests seemd to enjoy. The feta portion of this tale, I make quit often. Enoy!
Whipped Feta Dip
1/2 lb. feta cheese roughly cut in to pieces
2 tablespoons good olive oil
1/4 teaspoon of lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon chopped chives
In a small food processor combine, feta, lemon zest and black, pulse until combine. Add olive oil and pulse 2-3 times. Place mixture in small bowl, mix in the chives and chill for about a half hour.
Black Olive Tapenade
1 cup pitted, coarsely chopped kalamata black olives
1 anchovy fillet chopped
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 clove garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil (optional)
This take the classic French tapenade uses just black olives because that's what I had, the traditional approach calls for a mixture of green and black olives and capers. Frankly add what you like.
In small food processor add olives, anchovy, garlic and pepper, process for a minutes, slowly add lemon juice and add olive oil if mixture is too thick. Chill and enjoy