An asparagus olive tapenade, tucked inside of pre-made mini fillo shells is a fast and tasty hors d’oeuvres to have in your cocktail party arsenal.
If I had my choice, all cocktail parties would be sit-down affairs. Balancing a cocktail while trying to delicately nibble an hors d’oeuvres on a napkin inevitably turns into a messy handshake, a cocktail-doused dress or an hors d’oeuvres on the ground (gasp!) And there’s no such thing as the 5-second rule at cocktail parties. A spilled hors d’oeuvres is a man down, for good. Criminal, I tell you.
When Athens Fillo asked me to team up for a series of appetizers posts using their mini fillo shells, my mind went into overload with all of the possibilities. Little tidbits of savory or sweet goodness, tucked into fillo shells. Preferably there would be many different kinds all on one plate that I would enjoy at some swishy cocktail party…sitting down.
In the past, I used these fillo shells as a crunchy, flaky vessel to hold precious ingredients, namely smoked salmon and capers. But it was time to start thinking outside of the box…or shell.
Olive tapenade is a briny, completely irresistible concoction made of olives (of course), anchovies, capers and a few other ingredients. It is typically served with crackers or toasted slices of baguette.
However, with asparagus practically exploding from the shelves in the markets during the spring, I thought an asparagus olive tapenade would be a wonderful ode to the season.
A whole shelf of my upright freezer is dedicated to mini fillo shells. I’m not kidding. The beauty of these handy little appetizer cups is that they can be taken out of the freezer just 15 minutes before serving. So, when you want to throw an impromptu (sit-down) cocktail party on a Friday night, you’ll be ready to go.
Even better news…two unfilled shells hold just 25 calories. Fill them up with the tapenade, and the calorie count only jumps to 64.
Set a large saucepan of water over high heat, and bring the water to a boil. Prepare a large bowl of ice water.
Add the asparagus to the boiling water and cook until it is just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and immediately the asparagus into the ice water.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the asparagus, garlic, capers, anchovy, parsley, basil and orange zest.
Pulse until combined. Pour in the olive oil and pulse again until the mixture turns into a chunky paste.
Fill each fillo shell with 2 tablespoons of the asparagus and olive tapenade mixture. Serve.
Other easy appetizers:
Mini Asparagus & Olive Tapenade Cups Recipe
- 3 ounces pitted green olives
- 3 ounces pitted kalamata olives
- 6 ounces fresh asparagus about 15 spears, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoons capers drained
- 1 anchovy
- 1/4 cup minced parsley
- 4 basil leaves thinly sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
- 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 30 Athens mini fillo shells 2 packages, defrosted
- Set a large saucepan of water over high heat, and bring the water to a boil. Prepare a large bowl of ice water.
- Add the asparagus to the boiling water and cook until it is just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and immediately the asparagus into the ice water.
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine the asparagus, garlic, capers, anchovy, parsley, basil and orange zest.
- Pulse until combined. Pour in the olive oil and pulse again until the mixture turns into a chunky paste.
- Fill each fillo shell with 2 tablespoons of the asparagus and olive tapenade mixture. Serve.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Athen Foods. In addition, they provided me with the product for the recipe. All opinions are my own. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.