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Pinto, Mushroom & Pecan Tapenade

Beans and pecans are the perfect binder for the “mushroomy” deliciousness of our version of a tapenade! Dried cranberries or apricot pieces add a welcome tart contrast. A great addition to any charcuterie board!


  • 4 oz (125 g) dried mushrooms (Shiitake, Chanterelle, Porcini)
  • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) olive or canola oil
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) pecan pieces
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 6 large fresh Crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 can (19 oz/540 mL) Pinto beans, drained & rinsed (yields 2 cups/500 mL cooked beans)
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) minced fresh sage (or 1/4 tsp/1 mL dried sage)
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) minced fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp/2 mL dried thyme)
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) Kosher or sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries or diced dried apricots


Place dried mushrooms in a bowl or 4 cup (1 L) measuring cup and cover with boiling water. Let soak until softened, about 20 minutes.

While dried mushrooms are rehydrating, line a small loaf pan (3-4 cup/750 mL-1 L) with plastic wrap. Make sure the wrap “overhangs” the sides of the pan to cover the tapenade when filled.

In a large skillet over medium low, heat oil. Add pecans and onions and sauté until onion is translucent and pecans toasted. Add fresh mushrooms and continue to sauté until fragrant and lightly browned.

Add drained beans, reduce heat. Once dried mushrooms are softened, drain well (reserve liquid, see tips below) and add these mushrooms to skillet mixture with the herbs, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes, to evaporate some moisture from the mixture. It should be thick, not soupy.

Transfer this mixture to a food processor and whir until lightly coarse, or longer if a smoother tapenade is desired. Transfer mixture to a bowl and stir in cranberries or apricots until evenly distributed.

Spoon tapenade mixture into lined pan, evenly spread and cover with the overlapping wrap. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to 2 days before serving. Wrap with another layer of plastic and freeze for up to 3 months.

To serve, remove tapenade from loaf pan. Set on a platter with assorted crackers, pepper jellies, Dijon mustard, fresh fruit and veggies.


Dried mushrooms are widely available in the produce or “gourmet” aisle.

Refrigerate or freeze the liquid from the dried mushrooms to use this flavourful broth in other recipes like soup, stews or pasta sauces for a delicious umami, mushroom flavour!

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