Rough olive tapenade with caramelised fennel schiacciata


  • Serves 8 people

This piquant tapenade is great piled up on simple crostini, but the flavour of the carmelised fennel schiacciata takes it to a whole other level. You can make the schiacciata a day or two ahead, and serve it toasted.

  • 300 gm pitted black olives, such as Kalamata (about 350 gm unpitted)
  • 1 cup (firmly packed) flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tbsp coarsely chopped rosemary leaves
  • 60 gm drained capers in vinegar
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 lemons, finely grated rind and juice only, or to taste
  • 125 ml (½ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
  • Caramelised fennel schiacciata
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp dried yeast
  • 350 gm (2 1/3 cups) plain flour
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 baby fennel bulb, thinly sliced lengthways
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced lengthways
01   For caramelised fennel schiacciata, combine sugar, yeast, 25gm flour and 60ml water in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, mix until smooth and stand in a warm place until foamy (10-15 minutes). Add remaining flour, half the olive oil, 1 tsp sea salt and 180ml water and mix on low speed until a soft dough forms (1-2 minutes). Increase speed to medium, mix until smooth and elastic (4-5 minutes). Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat, cover and stand in a warm place until doubled in size (45 minutes-1 hour). Meanwhile, heat remaining olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat and cook fennel slices in batches, turning once, until golden (1-2 minutes each side), season to taste, then cool. Preheat oven to 200C. Divide dough in half, then roll out each piece on a lightly floured surface to a rough 12cm x 25cm rectangle. Place each on an oven tray lined with baking paper, make shallow indentations in dough at regular intervals with your fingertips, then scatter over caramelised fennel. Scatter over garlic, drizzle with a little olive oil and season to taste. Bake, swapping trays halfway through cooking, until golden (12-15 minutes), cool on a wire rack.
02   Meanwhile, pulse olives, herbs, capers, anchovy, garlic and lemon rind in a food processor until coarsely chopped, stir in olive oil and lemon juice, season to taste. Serve with thin slices of caramelised fennel schiacciata. Makes about 500ml. Tapenade will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
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