This fig and pecan tapenade made a unique addition to a New Year’s brunch we attended. It’s also pretty versatile in it’s presentation. You can either pre-assemble the crackers or have everyone create their own. The sweet figs, balsamic vinegar, olives and capers are a savory combination and go very well with the fresh goat cheese. Preparation couldn’t be easier. Just some chopping and a few minutes on the stove. And, you’re done!
Fig and Pecan Tapenade with Goat Cheese
Adapted from: Epicurious 
- 1 cup chopped stemmed dried Calimyrna figs
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/3 cup chopped pitted Kalamata olives or other oil-cured black olives
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon drained capers, chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 5.5-ounce logs soft fresh goat cheese
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted and salted pecans
- 1/4 cup toasted and salted pecan halves
- Fresh thyme sprigs for garnish
- Assorted breads and/or crackers
Combine chopped figs and 1/3 cup water in heavy medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat until liquid evaporates and figs are soft, about 7 minutes.
Transfer to medium bowl. Mix in olives, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, capers, and chopped thyme.
Season tapenade to taste with pepper. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.)
Stir chopped pecans into tapenade. Assemble crackers by adding some goat cheese to cracker. Spoon tapenade over goat cheese. Or, for assembling a platter, cut goat cheese into 1/2 inch rounds. Spoon tapenade into middle of platter. Arrange overlapping cheese rounds in circle and add the crackers or breah around the edge. Garnish with pecan halves and thyme sprigs.