Saturday, May 9, 2009

Sun Dried Tomato Spread with Kalamata Olives and Toasted Almonds

I stole this recipe.

(I've done it

Actually, what I did was figure it out from the ingredients listed on the container. Did a darned good job of it too (yes, I'm sayin' so), not having proportions and all.

So, is that stealing?

Maybe so. Maybe not.

All morning I tried to find a web site for the local producers of Paolo's Antipastos by Hasta Be Pasta, but they don't seem to have one which is a bummer because I'd like to give them credit.

At any rate, here is my iteration just in time for outdoor lounging on the deck, sipping a glass of dry rosé and nibbling on noshes while a warm, almost-summer breeze ruffles your hair and the grill is waiting to do its duty for dinner.

This sunny spread takes about 2 minutes to whip up in the food processor and is a wonderful accompaniment to rustic artisan breads. Have your ingredients assembled and ready to go, and don't forget to toast those almonds; it makes a difference.

Sun-Dried Tomato and Kalamata Olive Spread
Preparation and ingredients proportions by Christine, lifted from the ingredients list of Paolo's Antipastos
1 and 1/2 8-ounce jars (about 1 heaping cup, packed) sun dried tomatoes in oil, drained
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
Juice from 1/2 of a large Meyer lemon
Fresh rosemary, thyme and oregano, chopped (see Cook's Notes)
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
Olive oil if needed
Place the sun dried tomatoes, kalamatas, lemon juice and herbs in a food processor and pulse several times until a it becomes a chunky, spreadable consistency.
Add the almonds and pulse just until they are broken up but visible.
You can thin the spread, if desired, with a drizzle of olive oil now, but I didn't need to.
That's it. Get out your antipasto tray; load it up with great cheeses, good bread, salami and cornishons and get out to the deck. Don't forget the wine.

Cook's Notes:
> I picked the herbs fresh from my garden. When chopped, had about 1 tablespoon each of the rosemary and oregano and about 1/2 teaspoon thyme. You should feel free to use whatever herbs you have on hand that will go with tomatoes, which is the dominant note in this spread.
> I experimented with making this spread earlier this spring, using up the remainder of my slow-roasted tomatoes that had been in the freezer since last fall. It worked very well and I was proud to have a spread that was made with mostly locally grown ingredients. This time, lacking said tomatoes, I used a product made in the Napa Valley, not too terribly far from my kitchen. It made a very good spread, but if you're lucky enough to put up your own sun dried tomatoes, so much the better.
> This recipe made enough spread to fill two 5-ounce containers.

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