Recipes

A word about olives and flavor . . .

Olives, like wine, have slight differences in taste based, in part, on the geography and characteristics of their estate of origin (what the French call terroir). In addition, olives from the new crop which are packed during the months of December through April will have a slightly bitter flavor when compared with olives that have been held in storage for five or six months prior to packing. These are normal variations, and the Department of Agriculture is very careful to define a normal flavor and odor as "Green Olives free of any objectionable flavors or odors including, but not limited to, Zapatera and/or butyric acid flavors or odors."
DAVID'S FIDEOS (Vermicelli)
8 oz. vermicelli
1/2 cup ITALICA OLIVE OIL
2 tablespoons tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups stock or water
1 teaspoon salt

Heat olive oil in a small skillet until it will brown a crumb of bread. Brown the vermicelli slightly, three or four "twists" at a time until all vermicelli twists are brown. Bring stock or water, tomato sauce and two tablespoons of the remaining olive oil to a boil in a shallow saucepan or four-inch deep casserole. Add salt and the browned twists of vermicelli. Cover and cook for 8 to 10 minutes until the pasta is tender but not mushy. Stir once with a fork without breaking the strands. When vermicelli is done, remove lid to permit escape of steam. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

CAPER AND OLIVE TAPENADE

5 tablespoons capers
1/2 cup ITALICA GREEN OLIVES
2 flat anchovy fillets - more to taste
4 garlic cloves
1/2 cup ITALICA EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

Coarsely chop the ingredients or blend in a food processor. Spoon over slices of French bread or use as a dip.

CHICKEN RICE PILAF

2/3 cup long grain rice
2/3 broken thin spaghetti
1/3 cup ITALICA OLIVE OIL
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup (fresh or frozen, thawed) broccoli florets
1/4 teaspoon thyme, crushed
1 cup cooked chicken, julienned
1/2 cup sliced green onion (scallions)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup diced red pepper

In saucepan, saute rice and spaghetti in olive oil until golden, stirring often. Add chicken broth and bring to boil. Add broccoli and thyme. Cover and simmer 15 minutes or until rice is tender, stirring occasionally. Add remaining ingredients and heat through. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

PASTA WITH LEMON OLIVE OIL

Zest of 1 lemon
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup ITALICA OLIVE OIL
1-2 large garlic cloves minced
1/2 cup ITALICA KALAMATA OLIVES, pitted and sliced
2 tablespoons fresh chopped thyme or basil
Add salt and freshly ground coarse black pepper
1 pound pasta of your choice

Zest or grate the lemon and combine with the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic cloves, olives, thyme, and salt and pepper in a large serving bowl. Toss the hot cooked pasta with the sauce. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

TOSSED VEGETABLES WITH PECAN DRESSING

8 small red-skinned potatoes
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed
1/2 pound wax beans, trimmed
3 large ears corn, quartered
1 small cucumber
2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
3/4 cup sliced celery
1 small onion, sliced and separated into rings
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
1/3 cup ITALICA OLIVE OIL
3 tablespoons chopped toasted pecans
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Peel potatoes by removing a ribbon of peel around center of each potato. Cook in boiling salt water for 10 minutes. Add beans and cook 2 minutes longer. Add corn and cook 3 minutes. Drain and rinse in ice water. Drain and combine with next 4 ingredients. Blend remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables. Serve. Yields 6 servings.

MUSHROOM FRITTATA

2 cups sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup ITALICA OLIVE OIL
1 cup sliced leeks
1 small clove garlic, minced
8 eggs, well-beaten
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano, crushed
1/8 teaspoon coarse black pepper
1 cup cubed mozzarella cheese
1 cup fresh or frozen peas
1/4 cup chopped pimiento
2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley

In large oven-proof skillet, brown mushrooms in oil. Add leeks and garlic; cook until just tender. In bowl, beat together next 5 ingredients. Pour into skillet. Cook without stirring, until edges are set. Lift edges to allow uncooked egg to run underneath. When eggs are slightly browned on bottom, sprinkle remaining ingredients over eggs. Bake at 350°F for 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted and eggs are puffed. Serve from skillet. Yields 4 to 6 servings.

ROASTED CHICKEN, SPANISH STYLE

(simplified)
1 4½ to 5 pound roasting chicken
Salt and Pepper
1 clove garlic
4 tablespoons ITALICA OLIVE OIL
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 medium onion, sliced
1 cup Italian tomatoes, cut small
2 medium-sized green peppers, cut up
3/4 pound small mushrooms (washed and drained)

Dress and clean chicken. Season inside and out with salt and pepper. Rub outside with a cut clove of garlic. Roll in olive oil to which oregano has been added. Roast in open pan in hot oven (450° F). When browned, reduce heat to 375°F, add onion and tomatoes. Cover and continue roasting 1 to 1¼ hours, or until tender. Twenty minutes before chicken is finished, add the green peppers and mushrooms. Yields 6 servings.

FRIED ZUCCHINI

Be sure zucchini is young to obtain best results. Wash the zucchini; scrape off the skin and cut the vegetable into thin discs or 2-inch strips. Sprinkle with flour and fry in hot (not smoking) ITALICA OLIVE OIL until golden brown.

For variety dip in flour and beaten egg, and fry in deep hot olive oil.

SWEETBAY GRILLED SIRLOIN TIPS

1 lb. Sweetbay Angus® Sirloin Tips

Ingredients for Marinade:
2 tablespoons ITALICA EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
2 tablespoons Kikkoman® Tamari Soy Sauce
2 tablespoons Fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Mix together marinade ingredients. In a non-reactive container just large enough to hold the meat, mix marinade and beef, coating well with marinade. Allow to marinate 6-8 hours or overnight in refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before cooking. Preheat grill to medium. Remove sirloin tips for marinade. Grill the first side for 30 seconds, turn, grill second side for 30 seconds and return to first side. Cook 5 minutes or until done. Remove from grill, allow to rest 5-10 minutes before slicing. Yields 2 to 4 servings.