Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club

Milk Chocolate Cremosa with Espresso Parfait

Miami chef and restaurateur Michael Schwartz (a friend of a friend) reports that this is one of his best-sellers. “(The) olive oil reinforces the richness of the cremosa,” he says.

Ingredients

  • For the cremosa:
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1 pound good-quality milk chocolate, chopped
  • For the espresso parfait:
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tablespoon strong-brewed espresso, cooled
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened 5 thin slices of white sandwich bread, halved diagonally and crusts trimmed

    For serving:
  • 1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts, chopped
  • Extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Directions

Step 1

In a saucepan, heat the cream with the granulated sugar until hot to the touch. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks. Gradually whisk in 1 cup of the hot cream. Scrape the mixture into the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, whisking, until slightly thickened, 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the chocolate and let it stand until melted, 5 minutes. Whisk until smooth. Transfer to a shallow bowl and refrigerate until very cold, at least 4 hours.

Step 2

In a bowl, beat the cream with the confectioners’ sugar, espresso, and vanilla until firm. Spoon the cream into ten 1/2 cup ramekins and freeze until firm.

Step 3

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the bread on both sides. Toast on a baking sheet for about 8 minutes, or until golden.

Step 4

Spoon the milk-chocolate cremosa onto plates, sprinkle with the hazelnuts, and drizzle with olive oil. Serve the espresso parfait and toast on the side.

Note: The cremosa can be refrigerated for up to 3 days; the espresso parfait can be frozen for up to 1 week.

Serves 10 — Recipe from Food & Wine, December 2008

Six-Minute Meyer Lemon Custard

Luscious with the sweet/tart notes of Meyer lemon (a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange), this soft custard is the perfect ending to a Mediterranean meal. If you can’t find Meyer lemons, substitute the juice and zest of regular lemons, blood oranges, or mandarin oranges.

Ingredients

  • 3 whole eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Meyer lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest, preferably from a Meyer lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Directions

Step 1

Place all ingredients but the olive oil in a high-speed blender (capable of generating frictional heat above 160°F). If you don’t have a high-speed blender, see the note in step 4.

Step 2

Turn the blender on to its highest setting and process for 4 minutes.

Step 3

While continuing to run on high speed, pour in the olive oil and blend for an additional 90 to 105 seconds until you can see the custard firming up on the sides.

Step 4

Note: If you don’t have a high-speed blender, simply blend until smooth and frothy in step 2, stream in the olive oil with the motor running, then pour into a double boiler or bowl set over gently simmering water on the stovetop, stirring until it thickens up (it should reach 160°F for fully cooked eggs, or hold at 140°F for 3 1/2 minutes).

Step 5

The custard can be refrigerated for up to three days or frozen for longer storage. When defrosted, it will return to the same creamy consistency as when fresh.

Serves 6 — Recipe adapted from food52.com

Fig and Almond Olive Oil Cake

There are several things I love about this cake: it’s easy; it’s gluten-free; it’s Paleo-friendly; it uses a modest amount of extra virgin olive oil (some cakes call for as much as a cup of your precious liquid gold); and it utilizes figs, which forever more will remind me of my latest idyll in Abruzzo. I ate the best figs of my life on this trip, all plucked from the trees on the Di Mercurio farm. If you can’t find fresh figs, top the cake with slices of fresh pear that have been tossed in a light coating of sugar and lemon juice.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Zest of 1 small lemon
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups fine almond flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 8 to 10 fresh ripe figs, stemmed and sliced crosswise
  • Crème fraîche or sweetened whipped cream, for serving

Directions

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.

Step 2

In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, lemon zest, honey, olive oil, eggs, and salt. Add the almond our and baking powder; whisk again until combined.

Step 3

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and top with g slices. (Arrange in concentric circles.) Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the top is golden and the center is set. Transfer the cake to a rack and let it cool for 20 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, invert the cake onto a cooling rack and let cool completely. Top with a second rack and turn the cake g side up for serving. Serve each slice with a dollop of crème fraiche or whipped cream.

Serves 8 — Recipe adapted from gourmandeinthekitchen.com

Towpath Olive Oil Cake

This recipe was recommended to us by a talented baker who pronounced it a keeper, one of the best cake recipes in her files. 

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup best quality extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
  • Juice of 1 orange 

Directions

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the sides of a 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. 

Step 2

In a small bowl, stir the flour and baking powder together. 

Step 3

Place the sugar and eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until thick and pale yellow, about 3 to 5 minutes. 

Step 4

Add the olive oil, milk, orange zest, and orange juice and beat for another minute or two. Turn off the machine and fold in the flour mixture by hand. 

Step 5

Scrape into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack completely before serving. 

Makes one 9-inch cake, serving 8 to 10Recipe from The London Cookbook by Aleksandra Crapanzano, Ten Speed Press (2016)