Wednesday, April 28, 2010

On the Fly: Sweet & Savory

date squares3

Here's the story, of a lovely lady,
who was busy making up 5 nice hors d'oevres.

All of them had toasted bread,
like crostini. Even some with herbs.

But then the lady burned the bread very badly.
She was pissed and didn't know just what to do!

But she always has a fresh baked loaf of datenut,
That is how she made this recipe up for you!

(If you didn't sing the Brady Bunch song in your head while reading that, then you are too young).

I always burn the crostini toasts. Always.

I walk away from the oven for only 2 minutes and they are ruined.
What is wrong with me? I need to sit by the oven and watch them. No more excuses.

But this time I was happy that I burned the bread.
Otherwise this recipe would never have come to fruition.

I had a party recently and was pressed for time, making all the last minute appetizers, and I was planning on that fantastic David Lebovitz fig tapenade for raisin crostini, however you know the outcome.

So.....I looked at the freshly baked datenut bread sitting on the counter, and decided sweet and savory it was going to be.

I cut the loaf into little jewel box squares, swiped with some tapenade, and little slices of cornichon pickle on top to create the most wonderful little appies.

So, if you happen to have datenut bread lying around, make these, they were so good!

David Lebovitz's Fig & Olive Tapenade:

1/2 cup (about 3 ounces) stemmed & quartered, dried Black Mission figs
1 cup water
1 cup black olives; Nicoise, Lyon, or Greek, rinsed and pitted
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons whole-grain mustard
1 small garlic clove, peeled
2 anchovies, rinsed in warm water
1/2 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary or thyme
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
black pepper and salt, if necessary

In a medium-sized saucepan, simmer the figs in the water for about 10 minutes, until very tender. Drain, reserving a few tablespoons of the liquid.

If using a food processor, pulse the pitted olives, drained figs, lemon juice, mustard, garlic, capers, and fresh rosemary to create a thick paste. Pulse in the olive oil until you've achieved a chunky-smooth paste. Season with black pepper and salt, if necessary. (The spread can be thinned with a bit of the reserved fig poaching liquid.)

If using a mortar and pestle (I used a meat tenderizer, because I don't have a mortar and pestle), mash the olives with the garlic, capers, and fresh rosemary. Pound in the drained figs. Once they are broken up, add the olive oil and season with black pepper, fig poaching liquid, and salt, if necessary.

Spread some of the tapenade on toasted raisin bread slices or in this case, datenut squares and top with a sliced cornichon pickle!

Necessity is the Mother of Invention!



Ciao Chow Linda said...

Necessity is the mother of invention they say - and your creative talents came through in a pinch.

doggybloggy said...

ditto - linda - you always come out shining!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I would encourage all to try Stacey's nate nut bread, I can't even count now how many times I made it over the winter! I'm very confident these appies were superb!
p.s. I did sing the song.

Claudia said...

After growing up on date-nut bread in NYC, it's been decades since I have had it - it doesn't exist in MN. So you know I will do that. Now the fig tapenade - oh my what treasure is there.

kat said...

What a good save! You need one of those new see through toasters so you don't burn your bread.

Michele said...

Love that tapenade and I absolutely sang that in my head! lol

The Japanese Redneck said...

I'm not too young, I did read it to the tune. Very creative, both the song and the appetizer.

Dana said...

Laughing here. They say that some of the best food comes out of mistakes. I have personally never had that experience but it looks like you did here!

Lori Lynn said...

Oh, I sang it instantly!

Very creative!