Maybe because it's so familiar to California, but the food and flavors of Provence—tomatoes, olive oil, olives, etc—have always felt like second nature to me. I had stopped through the region a day here or there but really got a chance to explore on this latest trip up the Rhone River. One of my favorite food places of the trip was Avignon and the Avignon Les Halles was a total showstopper. All of those summery flavors that define Provence were everywhere I turned but I really loved how many savory pastries there were like savory Palmiers. There's really nothing to dislike when it comes to the little puff pastry rolls that are palmiers. They're so often made sweet but I was inspired by all the savory ones we saw across the region. This tomato and olive version is from nowhere and everywhere at the same time—a bite of Provence that is totally transporting.
Generously dust a work surface with flour. Place the pastry on the prepared work surface, dust lightly with flour, and, using a rolling pin and sharp knife roll and trim it into a 10-by-12-inch rectangle.
Using a spoon, spread the tapenade evenly over the surface of the pastry. Sprinkle the sundried then sprinkle 1/2 cup of the cheese evenly over the top. Starting with one of the longer sides, roll up the pastry tightly like a jelly roll, stopping at the center of the pastry sheet. Repeat with the other side so that there are 2 rolls that meet in the center. Wrap and freeze until firm, at least 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat oven to 400°F and arrange the rack in the middle. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Using a serrated knife, trim each end then cut the roll crosswise into 1/2-inch slices. Arrange the slices on the prepared baking sheets about 1-inch apart and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Bake until the pinwheel bites are lightly browned, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the baking sheets from the oven and flip the pinwheels over with a flat spatula. Return to the oven and bake until golden brown, about 5 minutes more. Remove the pinwheels to a wire rack to cool slightly then serve.
This was sponsored by Viking River Cruises but all content, ideas, and words are our own. Thanks for supporting these sponsors who allow us to keep Salt & Wind up and running.
Food styling and photography by Aida Mollenkamp