I first made this tapenade on vacation when I had an urge to find an alternative for the salsa and guacamole that had been dominating our cookout appetizers. On a whim I threw two kinds of olives and two types of grilled bell peppers into the food processor with some herbs, garlic, olive oil and lemon juice, concocting a red and green paste with intense Mediterranean flavors. Deep, earthy and fresh, it's a perfect spread for a crostini. It can also be used as a topping for meat, poultry or fish, or to adorn your favorite pasta.
TWO-TONE OLIVE AND BELL PEPPER TAPENADE
[Yield: about 2 cups]
1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives
1/2 cup almond-stuffed green olives
1 red pepper
1/2 large green pepper
4 Tbsp red onion, minced
4 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup fresh parsley
1. Cut bell peppers in half and remove seeds. Broil pepper halves for about 15 minutes until charred and soft. Place roasted peppers in brown paper back, fold back and allow them to sweat for about 10 minutes to loosen the skins.
2. Peel peppers, discard skin and chop roughly. Add peppers, olives and remaining ingredients to a food processor and pulse until combined. Adjust seasonings to taste.