Sundried Tomato & Olive Tapenade

You may remember my tales of our Kentucky Derby slash Shaun's Birthday party last week, where I prepared the most chocolately, alcohol laced brownies of all time and a new twist on classic hummus. Of course, I didn't stop there.

For yet another chic cocktail food, I once again consulted Giada DeLaurentiis' Everyday Italian since all of her recipes are nothing short of classy, simple and delicious to boot. When I stumbled upon her Sun-dried Tomato & Olive Tapenade, I knew it was the perfect addition to my Derby spread. Though Giada serves it up with endive leaves, I personally am not a huge fan of the taste. Not to mention that I have an unhealthy obsession with crackers. I'll pretty much eat them with anything slathered on top. Anyhow, let's get down to the goods...

Sun-dried Tomato & Olive Tapenade
Adapted from Everyday Italian
3 cans black olives
1 jar sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil

In a food processor (or a blender would probably work as well), combine drained black olives and sun-dried tomatoes, including the olive oil they were packed in. Pulse until the mixture is smooth, but still with chunky bits of olives and tomatoes. If for some reason your mixture is dry, add a bit of olive oil and mix until smooth. Mine was very oily just from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes, so no extra olive oil was necessary. Serve with crackers, corn chips, endive leaves, crostini or pita chips.

Could this spread be any easier? The sundried tomatoes give a nice bite while the olives maintain a sublty salty flavor. This recipe makes a lot of tapenade, but can you ever have too much when hosting a party? Well, in my case, you can because I had a lot left over...but I'm chalking that up to the fact that my mother always taught me to have enough food for an army and then some when having company. I even served it up in a super sweet tea cup and saucer since there's nothing more unusual looking than a giant bowl of tapenade. Instead, opt for a small serving dish (or in this case, cup) and garnish with the dipping materials.

So what do you think? Are you a fan of tapenade? What's your favorite party food?