Four Spreadable Dips From Provence

The ‘Ades’ Of Summer: Tapenade and her cousins

I have been noticing a trend developing in the South of France: Pick a commonly used ingredient like chickpeas, roasted peppers, sun-dried tomatoes or even basil; make it spreadable, then add the suffix ade and voila, you have a fabulous finger food to serve at your next apéro.

The Ades of Summer: Tomatade, Tapenade, Poivronade, Poischichade. Try these delicious and easy to make spreads with your next bottle of chilled rosé — I promise that you will thank me later.


  1. Indicating a dish or recipe: griller + ‎-ade → ‎grillade
  2. Indicating a drink made from a given fruit: ‎lemon + ‎-ade → ‎lemonade

I am sure this has existed for quite some time but I never really paid much attention to it until our last few trips to France where I noticed more and more market vendors offering pre-made spreads, the most common being olivade, a variant of tapenade that excludes anchovies and capers from the famed olive spread.

An olive vendor in Cadenet, France offers a selection of dips and spreads.

We became enamored with poischichade, which is basically hummus made without tahini then flavored with a healthy spoonful of cumin, after meeting a chickpea vendor at the Isle-sur-la-Sorgue market while on the search for pre-made picnic foods to snack on. Our son Beau became so thoroughly addicted to poischichade (pwah-she-chade) shortly after. He hoarded the first container we bought in the back seat of our Renault, muttering something about my precious as he dipped an endless stream of baby carrots and cucumber slices into it.

We soon explored many other dips made from eggplant, sun-dried tomatoes, anchovies, figs, and even pistounade — a dip made from basil, green olives, and almonds. The Summer ‘Ades’, as we are calling them, have become a permanent fixture when we returned to the States especially when served with a still hot, crispy socca and a glass of chilled Provencal rosé.

Before my francophile friends mutter mon Dieu at some of my recipe titles, I have seen so many variations of titles for the same dish. Take tomatade for example, some call it ‘delice de tomate’ or ‘caviar de tomates’ while others have added the ade suffix to the root word. Besides, you really are missing the point if you focus solely on the names. These are fantastic easy to make dips and spreads that you really should give a try. In fact, if you are the sort of person that cannot be bothered at all to make four spreads in less than 30 minutes you should visit our friends at Remember Provence who sells an incredible line of pre-made, authentic dips direct from Provence.

Give these delicious ‘Ades of Summer’ a try this weekend — You will thank me later! Tag us at #Pistouandpastis so we can see the wonderful dips you made!


A chickpea spread very similar to hummus made without tahini and flavored a healthy spoonful of cumin.


  • 1 — 15 ounce can chickpeas well-drained
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic mashed
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 squeeze lemon


  1. Mix everything in the bowl of your food processor and coarsely puree. Season with salt and pepper and serve.


A fire-roasted, sweet pepper dip that is good on everything from tartines to roasted cauliflower to hamburgers.


  • 2 red bell peppers burn the skin off over gas flame
  • 1/2 sweet onion chopped super fine
  • 1 clove garlic mashed
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 4 basil leaves


  1. Burn the skins off the red peppers and wipe the charred skin away.
  2. Chop the pepper super fine and saute with the chopped onion, garlic, and olive oil. Cook for five minutes, or until tender.
  3. Put everything into the bowl of your food processor along with the vinegar and basil. Season with salt and pepper then puree. I like to leave a little chunky, but the final texture is your choice.


A delicious spread made from sun-dried tomatoes that tastes great on just about everything.

Servings 4


  • 1 12 ounce jar sun-dried tomatoes in oil drain, save oil
  • 1 clove garlic chopped fine
  • 4 basil leaves


  1. OK, maybe the easiest recipe of all time. Mix everything together in a food processor and coarsely puree. Add a touch of the oil that the tomatoes came packed in. Eat.



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Francois de Melogue

Francois de Melogue


My earliest attempt at cookery began with the filleting of my sister's goldfish at age 2 and cooking my pet rabbits by age 7. Life has been downhill ever since.