Black Olive Tapenade and Bedford, PA

Black Olive Tapenade!?!?  What happened to the regular green kind?

Well friends, this one is easy on the wallet.  Assuming you already have a few dates, some olive oil, and a can of black olives laying around.

Black Olive Tapenade
Black Olive Tapenade

Love that chunky texture.  It’s almost as if Puréed and Minced had a baby: Tapenade.

Black Olive Tapenade
Slightly salted from the capers + slightly sweetened from the dates = intensely good

So… I’ve really been wanting to post about the Mumford and Sons concert (in PITTSBURGH!) that we went to a few days ago.  It was WON.DA.FULL.  Seriously.  But, that will have to wait, because I first must tell you about a little side trip we took (on Thursday and then -AGAIN!- on Friday) to a teensy little town called: Bedford.

Bedford, PA: Motorized Gadgets (that appeared to be powered by the sun?)
Bedford, PA Welcome Wagon: motorized gadgets along entire window front of laundry mat

It has a ring to it, like peanut butter and jelly or The Andy Griffith Show.

I almost expected a *friendly* sheriff to show up when we stepped onto the sidewalk.

Our little “trip” began when I wanted coffee.  We had driven for four hours, and honestly – I needed some caffeine.  But, not just any caffeine.  A soy latte.  Extra shot.  Extra amazing.  And, that cannot be found at any Dunkin Donuts or Gas Station.

So, we relied on Yelp.  It’s been a good restaurant search engine – slash – suggestion tool so far.  And Yelp suggested this place.

But, once we got here, it was time for lunch.  And wow.  Oh.  So.  Good.

I ordered some sort of a Grilled Mediterranean Sandwich – carefully crafted from some sort of (salty) tapenade with veggies *grilled* on a Ciabatta roll.  It came with Sunchips.  Appears the cafe had a *sort* of sodium bias.  Take heed, salt friends: It was worth it.

The Green Harvest Co: Grilled Mediterranean *Sandwich*
The Green Harvest Co: Grilled Mediterranean *Sandwich*

Vegan delight… in the afternoon.  And, inspiration for the recipe that follows… and this one (!) – a slightly sweet and mildly salty black olive tapenade – enhanced with a bit of fiber (from Chia seeds).  Yum!

Side Note: I usually don’t specify a type of oil to use, but this one REQUIRES olive oil.  It almost seems sacrilegious to use anything else.

Black Olive Tapenade
Black Olive Tapenade: Up close

Black Olive Tapenade

1 and 1/4 cup whole, pitted black olives
1 Tablespoon (drained) capers
1 Tablespoon chopped dates
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground chia seeds
1/4 teaspoon dijon mustard

Directions: Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and *chop* away (or pulse if using a food processor) until everything is finely chopped and looks like tapenade (a sort of minced-puréed hybrid).

Makes: a little over 1/2 cup.

Serve with slices of crusty bread or in crudités or here in my version of a Grilled Mediterranean Sandwich.

Mediterranean Grilled Sandwich - sans Take-out
Mediterranean Grilled Sandwich – sans Take-out
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