Be sure to use full-flavored olives in this appetizer.
Pulse first 6 ingredients and, if desired, rum in a blender or food processor 3 or 4 times. Gradually add olive oil, and pulse 3 or 4 times or until mixture forms a coarse paste, stopping to scrape down sides. Serve with fresh raw vegetables and toasted French baguette slices.
* White wine vinegar may be substituted for sherry vinegar.