Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Another tartine

Well, you didn’t think I’d leave you with only one tartine recipe did you? If you know me even just a little you’d know that wouldn’t happen. A bit of variety is always good, especially when it comes to tartines.

This tartine is as delicious as the last one, albeit a little less complicated. It is a tartine with a homemade Greek olive paste or pasta elias (πάστα ελιάς) as we call it in Greece, coeur de boeuf tomatoes and feta. The olives I used are from Kalamata, the region of Southern Greece famous for the production of olive oil and olives, and they are fruity and briny and everything a good olive should be, making this paste exceptionally flavorful.

No matter how much I love other cheeses, my one and only true love is and will always be feta. Whipped, in salads, on tartines, it elevates the flavor of dishes and gives them a rich, sharp, creamy quality.

Along with the sweet, sumptuous coeur de boeuf tomatoes oozing with freshness, the distinct salty flavor of olive from the paste with bursts of garlic and acidity from the capers and lemon, this tartine is absolutely divine.

I’m sure many of you can’t get enough of tomatoes right now and this tempting and simple option is ideal for those of you who want to enjoy the ever so beloved fruit of the summer to its fullest.

Tartines with Pasta Elias Kalamon (Kalamata Olive Paste), Coeur de Boeuf Tomato and Feta

Coeur de boeuf (ox heart) are what these tomatoes are called here in the Netherlands were I currently reside. I think they’re called beefsteak tomatoes in English-speaking countries. If you can’t find this variety, then go with any other juicy and sweet tomato you can get your hands on. I’m sure you’ll have no trouble finding them this time of year.

Choose a type of bread that can handle the weight of the ingredients that you'll put on top. Sourdough is ideal but any kind of bread with a crusty crust and a dense crumb will work.

Yield: 8 tartines / about 2 cups of olive paste

3 large coeur de boeuf (beefsteak) tomatoes, sliced
200 g Feta cheese
8 slices of good crusty bread (sourdough or multigrain)
Olive oil, to drizzle over the tartines
Freshly ground black pepper

for the pasta elias (olive paste)
170 g pitted Kalamata olives (about 1 full cup)
1 Tbsp capers, rinsed very well
2 anchovy fillets in oil, drained well
Grated zest of 1 small lemon
Juice of 1 small lemon
1 large garlic clove, crushed
Freshly ground black pepper, 3-4 grinds of the pepper mill
A handful of flat-leaf parsley (leaves and stems), roughly chopped
About 80 ml extra virgin olive oil, more or less to achieve the right consistency
Salt (if needed, I actually never need any)

Special equipment: small food processor, griddle pan (I use this one)


for the olive paste
Add all the ingredients for the paste except the olive oil and salt in your food processor and blend until smooth, stopping the machine occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the motor running, add the olive oil little by little until you have a smooth paste, taking care to add enough oil to reach the right consistency. You don't want it to be runny nor too thick. Give the paste a taste, add salt if needed (I doubt it’ll need any as the capers and anchovies have enough salt) and set aside until ready to use.

You can keep the olive paste in the fridge, covered for 5-6 days.

Heat your griddle pan over high heat and grill the bread slices on both sides. Transfer them to a plate. Alternatively you can toast the bread in the oven or in a toaster.

Spread enough of the olive paste on the bread to cover it. Add some sliced tomatoes and crumble some feta cheese on top. Drizzle the tartines with a little olive oil and grind some black pepper over the top.
Serve immediately.


  1. Those tomatoes are BEAUTIFUL. There are definitely oxhearts around in the US too, although I think that name is used to describe a shape of tomato instead of one particular type. Now I definitely want to get my hands on some good olives to eat with my own tomatoes!

  2. If only I could find tomatoes over here that are as tasty as the tomatoes in Greece.

  3. Magda, you are going to kill me with mouth-watering pleasure. I love all the ingredients! Feta is definitely one of my fave cheese (alongside side with the azorean island S. Jorge cheese).
    I love "tomates coração-de-boi" (the oxheart tomatoes) and they are so ripe these days (yesterday my dinner was grilled picanha with the tomatoes seasoned with salt ad pepper and roasted green and red peppers - just perfect).
    And I could eat olive paste my the spoon!!!!
    Tonight I have spinach and courgette soup for dinner, I think I'm going to add one of these tartines :D

  4. Have to agree with the others that those tomatoes are gorgeous!

    I just made the olive paste although I had to make some substitutions... I did have Kalamatas but to make even 1/4 cup I had to add a few others, I used fresh oregano instead of parsley as my parsley is sticks at the moment! - and I added a bit of roast red pepper on a whim. Delicious and I just had it for breakfast on my own crusty bread...but with sweet grape tomatoes and goat cheese.


  5. This is gorgeous, Magda! And just the kind of food we are loving right now... With the homemade bread I am planning for this weekend, we could have this BEFORE we use it with the bergamot! Our tomatoes at the market are stellar this year. My favorite is the Cherokee Purple - the sweetest tomato I have had in years... Love the pasta elias recipe... This plus some local goat's milk feta will do the trick, I think! ~ David

  6. Okay, I'm drooling now. This looks so incredibly delicious. Thank you for sharing such wonderful recipes from Greece. Always so wonderful!

  7. mouthwatering. I had all these ingredients in the house for a salad for Saturday lunch, I might just make these instead.

  8. Oh my heavens how beautiful. The color of your olive paste is sensational. I think I shall try to make this and have for my weekend evening meal with a glass of vino. Lovely

  9. Mouthwatering! Those summery tartines look and sound exquisite. What a great combination of flavors and textures.



  10. I live in Italy and have never thought of making my own olive paste. Just reading the ingredients in yours made my mouth water. Thank you!