Longtime friend of the Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club, author and TV host Steven Raichlen, shared this recipe from his forthcoming book, How to Grill Vegetables. It pays homage to Italians’ love of grilled artichokes. Here, this delectable botanical (yes, artichokes are technically flowers) are grilled directly in the embers of a wood or charcoal re.
- 4 large artichokes
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1/3 cup packed fresh mint leaves, stemmed and finely chopped
- Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling during grilling and for serving
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper
Trim the stem off each artichoke. Using kitchen scissors, cut the points off the leaves. (This is optional and most Sicilians don’t bother, but it does remove the sharp barbs.) Turn each artichoke upside down (stem end up) and smash it against your work surface a half dozen times to spread open the leaves.
Stuff each artichoke with garlic and mint, forcing both between the leaves. Generously—and we mean generously—drizzle each artichoke with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, set up your grill for ember-grilling. Rake out the coals in an even layer. Fan off the loose ash with a folded newspaper.
Stand the artichokes on the embers on their stem ends. Grill until the bottoms are charred and the flesh is tender. Using long-handled tongs, rotate the artichokes from time to time so they cook evenly. Turn them on their sides to char the outside leaves. Total grilling time will be 15 to 30 minutes. Use a metal skewer to test for doneness: It should pierce the artichoke easily.
Transfer the artichokes to a rimmed sheet pan with tongs. Using heat proof gloves and a paring knife, scrape any really burnt parts off the bottom and remove any really charred outside leaves. Transfer the artichokes to wide shallow bowls, drizzle with more olive oil, and dig in.
Serves 4 — Recipe from How to Grill Vegetables by Steven Raichlen (Workman, April 2021)
Nothing says “special occasion” more eloquently than beef tenderloin. To make sure the mild flavor of the meat is front and center, we rub it with a fragrant paste of fresh herbs, garlic, and extra virgin olive oil before oven-roasting. You can even skip the red wine sauce and drizzle the sliced meat with more olive oil.
- 4 pounds beef tenderloin, trimmed, but left whole
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, plus an extra sprig for a garnish
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary, plus an extra sprig for a garnish
- 2 tablespoons peeled minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons coarse salt (kosher or sea)
For the sauce:
- 1 cup good red wine, preferably Italian
- 2 tablespoons chopped peeled shallots
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 tablespoon cold butter
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place an empty, heavy-bottomed roasting pan into the oven for 10 minutes. While it is heating, combine 1/4 cup of olive oil, the thyme, rosemary, garlic, pepper, and salt in a bowl. Rub this seasoning paste evenly over the beef tenderloin.
After 10 minutes, remove the roasting pan from the oven, drizzle the 2 tablespoons of olive oil into the pan, tilt to coat the bottom of the pan, and add the seasoned meat. Place in the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the tenderloin over and return to the oven to sear the second side for an additional 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F and cook until the meat reaches your desired doneness using a meat thermometer (an internal temperature of 135°F for medium rare), approximately 15 to 18 minutes of additional cooking time.
In the meantime, make the wine sauce: In a saucepan, combine the wine, shallots, and salt and pepper. Reduce by half. Whisk in the thyme and butter just to heat through. When the tenderloin has finished
roasting, remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for 15 to 20 minutes. Slice the tenderloin into 1/2-inch slices and arrange on a platter. Spoon some wine sauce over the top.
Serves 8 — Recipe adapted from epicurious.com
Make a double batch of this moist bread, as it freezes well and is great for sharing with family and friends. If you’re a “from scratch” kind of person, you can make your own pumpkin purée from pie pumpkins.
- One 15-ounce can pumpkin purée (not pie filling)
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2/3 cup water
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and our three 7 x 3 loaf pans.
In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, olive oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the our, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.
Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Serves 24 — Recipe from allrecipes.com
For a carb-free version of these colorful, festive skewers, replace the cheese tortellini with cherry tomatoes, marinated mushroom caps, or pepperoncini.
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon,
- divided use
- 9 ounces fresh cheese tortellini
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground
- black pepper
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 8 ounces mozzarella balls, such as Ciliegine
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper akes
- 4 ounces sliced salami
- 1/4 pound roasted red peppers,
- cut into bite-size pieces
- 1 bunch fresh basil
- 14 ounces marinated artichoke hearts,
- drained and cut into bite-size pieces
- Large brined green or black olives, or a mix
Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large pot of boiling water. Cook the tortellini according to the package directions until al dente. Drain and transfer to a large bowl.
Season the cooked tortellini with salt and pepper. Add the balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup of olive oil and mix to combine. Set aside.
Marinate the mozzarella: Add the mozzarella balls to a small bowl along with the Italian seasoning, hot red pepper flakes, and the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil. Mix to combine and set aside.
Assemble by threading one piece each mozzarella, salami, roasted red pepper, tortellini, basil, artichoke heart, and olives on skewers.
Serves 4 to 6 — Recipe adapted from delish.com