Piccolo tomatoes stuffed with tapioca and black garlic

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These striking canapés combine a mixture of ingredients all packed with umami. Black garlic, olives and anchovies all play against the sweetness of the cherry tomatoes, while the tapioca filling provides a beautiful texture.

The black olive powder might sound intimidating, but it's incredibly easy to make – and looks seriously impressive on the plate too.

First published in 2020





  • Blender
  • Microwave


Drain the black olives, reserving the brine, then place them on a plate and cover in cling film. Place in the microwave and cook for 30 minutes – you want the olives to completely dry out and dehydrate
While the olives dry out, bring a pan of water to the boil and add the tapioca pearls. Cook for 5 minutes, then drain and immediately plunge into a bowl of cold water to halt the cooking process and remove some of the starch. Once cool, drain and dress with half of the olive oil and salt. Stir in the lemon zest and black garlic and set aside
Once the olives are completely dry, use a blender to blitz them into a powder and store in an airtight container
Place the reserved olive brine in a blender with the anchovies, garlic paste, half of the black olive powder and the remaining 100g of olive oil. Blitz for 10 minutes until completely emulsified and a black, coulis-like texture. Taste for seasoning
Slice the tops off the tomatoes and use a very small Parisienne scoop or spoon to hollow them out. Spoon the tapioca mix inside and garnish with a few oregano leaves
To plate, use the remaining black olive powder to create a stable base for the tomatoes to sit on. Arrange the tomatoes on the dish, then either serve the sauce on the side for dipping or spoon it around the plate

Brought to you by

Pascal Aussignac left France with business partner Vincent Labeyrie to champion 'la cuisine de Gascogne' at his restaurant, Club Gascon, in 1998.

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