Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club

Chickpea Salad

We always have a can of chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans or ceci beans) in our pantry for a quick side dish or salad. Rich in protein, fiber, and minerals, this is one versatile carbohydrate that satisfies hearty appetites.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/8 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 5 to 6 turns on a pepper mill (black peppercorns)
  • One 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup seeded and diced cucumber
  • 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine the oil, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, salt, hot red pepper flakes, oregano, and black pepper. Incorporate well with a whisk, then add the chickpeas, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes and basil. Let the salad marinate for 20 minutes, then serve.

Serves 2 — Recipe from Chef Bill Kim, Urbanbelly, Chicago, IL

Garden Vegetable Platter

We are apartment dwellers and don’t have a garden, but we’re always beguiled by the jewel-like colors of just picked produce at the Saturday farmer’s market. When vegetables are this fresh, they only need a quick dip in olive oil.

Ingredients

  • 12 small rainbow carrots, preferably with tops, scrubbed
  • 3 small heads fennel, ends and tough outer leaves trimmed
  • 2 bunches baby turnips (about 12) or 6 medium regular turnips
  • 2 or 3 bunches small red radishes with leaves
  • 2 scarlet turnips or 1 watermelon radish (optional), thinly sliced crosswise
  • Fresh extra virgin olive oil

Directions

Step 1

Trim the carrot tops, if using, to about 1/2 inch, and trim the root hairs, then cut the carrots in half lengthwise. Cut the fennel lengthwise into slender wedges. Set the vegetables in a large bowl of ice water for about 1 hour to crisp.

Step 2

Meanwhile, if using baby turnips, trim the tops to about 1/2 inch, then quarter the turnips; or cut regular turnips into slender wedges. Remove all but a few small leaves on each radish; swish the radishes in water to clean. Crisp the turnips and radishes in another bowl of ice water for about 45 minutes.

Step 3

Drain and dry the vegetables and arrange on a large platter. (Drape with damp paper towels if they’ll be standing before serving.) Serve with oil for dunking

Serves 8 — Recipe adapted from sunset.com

Cauliflower Steaks with Spiced Corn

Put these on the menu for “Meatless Monday.” Use the remainder of the cauliflower for another meal.

Ingredients

  • 2 large heads of cauliflower, stems lightly trimmed
  • 2 ears of sweet corn, husked
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 fresh red chile, seeded and minced
  • 4 scallions, white and green parts sliced
  • 1 tablespoon drained capers
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Cut three 3/4-inch-thick center slices from each head of cauliflower to form “steaks.” Reserve the remaining cauliflower for another use.

Step 2

In a saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the corn until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and cool, then cut the kernels from the cobs.

Step 3

In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the chile and cook over moderately high heat for 30 seconds. Add the scallions and cook until softened, about 1 minute. Stir in the corn and capers and season with salt and black pepper.

Step 4

In a large, nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil until shimmering. Add 3 cauliflower steaks and season with salt. Cook over moderate heat until lightly browned, about 3 minutes per side; transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and 3 cauliflower steaks.

Step 5

Press the corn-scallion mixture into the spaces between the cauliflower florets. Bake the cauliflower steaks for 25 minutes, or until tender and richly browned. Drizzle with additional olive oil before
serving.

Serves 6 — Recipe from Food and Wine, November 2010

Grilled Tuna with Castelvetrano Olive Relish

Feel free to substitute any meaty fish steaks or fillets for the tuna, such as swordfish, red snapper, branzino, salmon, or Chilean sea bass. If you have any leftover relish, serve it with bread or potatoes.

Ingredients

  • 4 tuna or swordfish steaks, each about 6 ounces
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed, sliced into 1/4-inch wedges
  • 2 leeks, cleaned and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 2 lemons, sliced into thin rounds, plus wedges for serving

For the relish:

  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup pitted, roughly chopped Castelvetrano olives
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Directions

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 475°F and set a rack on the top third of the oven and another on the bottom. Once hot, add a rimmed sheet pan to the oven to preheat.

Step 2

Rub the fish steaks with olive oil all over and season generously with salt and pepper. Toss the fennel, leeks, and lemons with a glug of olive oil and a pinch of salt.

Step 3

Carefully remove the preheated sheet pan from the oven and place the fish steaks in the center of the sheet pan (they will sizzle), then scatter the fennel mixture around the fish and place the sheet pan on the bottom rack. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 4

While the steaks cook, combine the relish ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Step 5

Turn the oven to broil and put the fish on the top rack under the broiler. Some of the outer edges of the leeks, fennel, and lemons should get a little char. This should take about 5 minutes.

Step 6

Serve with the olive relish and extra lemon wedges.

Serves 2 — Recipe adapted from goop.com