apenade and anchoïade are unique provençal specialties. They're mousse-like purées of olives and anchovies that can be spread on toast for hors d'oeuvres, blended into a sauce for crudités, dabbed on a simple salad of sliced tomatoes or mixed into cooked pasta.

Tapenade is made using green or black olives as the base, which is then flavored with capers, garlic or anchovies. Anchoïade is simply a purée of anchovies and olive oil with a few seasonings. Although the ingredients are simple, achieving a good flavor balance and texture is not easy. Fortunately, a true artist of these delicacies can be found in a quiet corner of the marché along Avenue Foch at a tiny stand that is almost purposely hidden from the main clamor of the rest of the marché.

There are other tapenade vendors at the marché. But don't give them a second thought. Buy tapenade and anchoïade only from Mr. Jerôme Ceti, the proprietor of Les Délices du Luberon. He's based in Isle-sur-Sourge about 200 km from St.-Tropez and generally comes to the marché on Tuesdays and Saturdays, but more reliably on Saturday than on Tuesday.

In addition totraditional provençal tapenade and anchoïade, he created a "pistounade", a piquant blend of green olives, basil and garlic. It's much lighter than a traditional tapenade or anchoïade and it's a delightful change of pace from the more pungent traditional versions.

For those who can't stay in St.-Tropez long enough to sample all of his tasty products, Mr. Ceti now offers his tapenade, anchoïade and pistounade sealed in glass jars. The jars have a 2-year shelf life and Mr. Ceti says that they will keep in the refrigerator for about 2-3 months after opening. He's mobbed by ladies from other parts of France stocking up on les délices.

 

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