Summer inevitably calls for Tapenade in France. This Provencal dark purple spread is a staple condiment made from black olives and capers that you’ll find at any market around the country. It is scrumptiously salty, and widely enjoyed as an appetizer often spread on crackers or crostini. It is so delicious, very moreish, and can also be used in many other applications: it makes a wonderful condiment to bring amazing flavors to any entrée (rub it on fish, poultry or roasts). I also love to use it in sandwiches. It is simply amazing to elevate any simple Summer sandwich into a memorable one.
This Tapenade Sandwich with Caramelized Bell Peppers, Artichokes Hearts & Goat Cheese is a perfect example of this. It features beautiful ingredients found in Summer Provencal cuisine: red bell peppers, goat cheese, Herbs de Provence (local dried herbs mix) and marinated artichoke hearts – all bound together on a thick layer of salty Black Olive Tapenade.
It’s both briny from the goat cheese and Tapenade and sweet from the caramelized onions and marinated artichoke hearts. It’s crisp from the toasted bread, chewy and tender from the filling.
I think it has it all.
How to make this Tapenade Sandwich with Caramelized Bell Peppers, Artichokes Hearts & Goat Cheese
This recipe begins by toasting bread slices with a small amount of butter. I often like to use multi-grain cereal bread for sandwiches, which provide more nutrients, a nice crunch and nutty flavor. Although, any kind of sandwich bread of your choosing works well in this recipe.
The recipe continues with the making of caramelized onions and bell peppers, which provides a delectable sweetness and meltiness to these sandwiches. The onion and red bell peppers are slowly cooked and caramelized in a frying pan/skillet until soft and melty.
I used red bell pepper, which is the sweetest kind and well-suited for being caramelized. Yellow or orange bell pepper will work well too – but green bell pepper won’t caramelize as nicely. Green peppers, being picked prematurely before being perfectly ripened, don’t receive all the natural sugars that red, yellow or orange do.
Once the onion and pepper are caramelized, the sandwich is finally built. It starts with a thick layer of Black Olive Tapenade, onion and pepper, marinated artichoke hearts, and crumbled goat cheese.
The sandwich is finished off with a drizzle of EVOO and a sprinkle of Herbs de Provence. Herbs de Provence, heavily used in Provencal Cuisine, can be find in spice shops or bulk stores. As a substitute, you can use any dried herbs of your choosing, such a thyme, rosemary, parsley or basil.
My Cooking notes:
- Fresh, homemade Black Olive Tapenade will go a long way for imparting great flavors to this sandwich. Find my recipe for it here.
- Multi-grain cereal bread, such as Rudolph’s Bavarian Multi-Grain Bread, works best here, but you can definitely use any sandwich bread that you might prefer. Pain de Mie works well too.
I hope you’ll love this Tapenade Sandwich with Caramelized Bell Peppers, Artichoke Hearts & Goat Cheese. This is a scrumptious, satisfying meat-less sandwich (and I guarantee you won’t miss the meat!).
This recipe comes together is 30 minutes and gives you enough to make two sandwiches.
You can easily double, or triple the recipe to feed a large crowd. I shared my homemade Black Olive Tapenade recipe here last year and I recommend you make it – which will bring incredible flavor to the sandwiches.
You may also like:
- Provence-Style Tomatoes with Breadcrumbs & Herbs
- Croque-Madame Sandwich
- French-style Couscous Salad
- Pearl-onion Tart Tatin
Did you make this recipe?
Black Olive Tapenade
2 slices Multi-Grain cereal bread (ie. Rudolph’s Bavarian Multi-Grain Bread)
½ tbsp butter (7g) salted or unsalted
2 tbsp (30ml) Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped finely
½ sweet onion, peeled and sliced in half rounds
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut in ½-inch (1.25cm) thick slices
½ tbsp (6g) sugar
2 tsp Herbs de Provence, divided
½ tsp salt
½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 Marinated Artichoke hearts, quartered (ie. Unico brand)
2 tbsp Soft unripened goat cheese, crumbled (ie. Soignon brand)
Prepare the Black Olive Tapenade first, see recipe here.
Step 1 – Prepare the toasts - Cut the bread slices in half, so you have 4 toasts. Spread butter evenly on both sides of the bread and toast in a skillet/frying pan on medium-heat for about 3 minutes on each side until toasted and golden. Set aside.
Step 2 – Caramelize the onion and pepper - In the same skillet/frying pan, over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon (15ml) EVOO. When the oil is warm and almost sizzling, add the garlic, onion, bell pepper and sugar. Cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion and pepper are soft and lightly caramelized. Season with 1 tsp Herbs de Provence, salt and pepper. Set aside.
Step 3 - Assemble the sandwiches - Spread about 2 tablespoons of Black Olive Tapenade on two of the pieces of toast. Top each toast with half of the caramelized onion and pepper, 4 marinated artichoke heart quarters, 1 tbsp crumbled goat cheese, ½ tsp Herbs de Provence, a 1/2tbsp (7.5ml) drizzle of EVOO. Close each sandwich with the remaining toasts and enjoy immediately.
Did you make this recipe?
I’d love to know how it turned out! Please let me know by leaving a comment below, rate the recipe and/or share a photo on Instagram: tag @pardonyourfrench and hashtag it #pardonyourfrench. Bon Appetit!