Fig and Toasted Walnut Tapenade with Goat Cheese

Here’s the perfect appetizer for a Thanksgiving gathering — and you’ll most of the ingredients at the farmers markets!


1 cup chopped dried Calimyrna figs, stems removed
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup chopped pitted Kalamata olives
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fig balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon drained capers, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
10 oz. fresh soft goat cheese (about two logs), cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1/4 cup toasted walnut halves
Fresh thyme sprigs
Assorted crackers


In a medium saucepan, combine chopped figs and 1/3 cup water and bring to a boil. Turn down heat and cook until liquid evaporates and figs are soft, about 7 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl to cool.

Add olives, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, capers, and chopped thyme to fig mixture and stir to combine. Season tapenade to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate if not using immediately.

Just before serving, stir in chopped walnuts.

To serve, arrange goat cheese rounds in a circle in the center of medium platter. Spoon tapenade into center of cheese circle. Garnish with walnut halves, thyme sprigs, and serve with crackers.

NOTE: Tapenade can be made 3 days ahead. Bring to room temperature before serving.