Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club

Clam Cakes Remoulade

These clam cakes come together in minutes. The remoulade sauce is a delicious garnish—use any leftovers as a flavorful sandwich spread. 

Ingredients

For the remoulade:

  • 1 cup high-quality mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce, such as Cholula or Sriracha
  • 1 teaspoon seafood seasoning, such as Obrycki’s or Old Bay
  • 1 large pickle spear, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon pickle juice
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika

For the clam cakes:

  • 6 ounces of clams, freshly steamed or canned and drained
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and quartered
  • 1 stalk celery, trimmed and cut into chunks
  • 12 spicy corn tortilla chips, such as Garden of Eatin’ Red Hot Blues 
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup high-quality mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons hot sauce, such as Cholula or Sriracha
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Directions

Step 1

For the remoulade: Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Refrigerate until needed.

Step 2

For the clam cakes: If you’re steaming fresh clams, reserve the juice they release for another recipe. If you’re using large cherrystones, use kitchen shears to cut them into pieces for easier processing. Pulse the clams, vegetables, and chips in a food processor until you get a fine dice. Transfer to a large bowl and fold in half the flour, the mayo, hot sauce, and parsley. Form into about 10 small or 6 large patties. 

Step 3

Place the rest of the flour in a pie plate. Heat a heavy skillet and then add the olive oil. Very lightly dip both sides of each patty into the flour, shake off any excess, and place in skillet. Cook until a light crust develops, about 5 to 8 minutes. Flip and cook for another 5 minutes.

Step 4

Transfer the clam cakes to a serving dish or individual plates. Top with dollops of the remoulade and pass more on the side. 

Yields 3-4 servings

Whipped Ricotta Dip

This simple but flavorful dip takes just minutes to make and is easily customizable. Add hot red pepper flakes or jarred Calabrian chiles for a bit of heat. Chopped brined olives (black or green) are good additions, too.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh herbs (such as basil, thyme, oregano, or chives), plus an additional sprig or two for garnish
  • 1 small clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt (kosher or sea), or more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Step 1

In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta, olive oil, lemon juice (if using), honey, fresh herbs, garlic, salt and pepper. Beat with a hand mixer on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about one minute. You can also blend everything together in a food processor. Give the dip a taste, adding extra olive oil, lemon juice, honey, or salt and pepper, if needed.

Step 2

Transfer to an attractive serving bowl, drizzle more olive oil on top, and garnish with fresh herbs. Serve with crackers, breadsticks, crostini, or fresh vegetables.

Serves 4 — Recipe adapted from aheadofthyme.com

Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad with Fruit and Nuts

This is an attractive seasonal salad, one that can be adapted to what you have on hand. Substitute a firm pear for the apple (an Asian pear is especially good) or fresh orange juice for the lemon juice.

Ingredients

For the salad:

  • 1 pound fresh brussels sprouts (about 4 cups) 1 medium crisp apple, such as Honeycrisp or Gala, cored and chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup freshly shaved or shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1/3 cup walnuts, sunflower seeds, pine nuts, or pepitas, lightly toasted
  • 1/3 cup minced fresh chives

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt (kosher or sea), or more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Step 1

Rinse and pat dry the sprouts. Trim off the stems and remove and discard any dry or wilted leaves. Shave the brussels sprouts with your desired method (by hand, with a mandoline, or using the thin disk of a food processor) and place them in a large bowl.

Step 2

Top the shaved brussels sprouts with the chopped apple,
cranberries, cheese, walnuts, and chives.

Step 3

In a separate bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients until emulsified. Taste for seasoning, adding more of any of the dressing ingredients to taste.

Step 4

Just before serving, pour the dressing over the salad and toss gently to combine.

Serves 4 to 6 — Recipe adapted from natashaskitchen.com

Grilled Pear Salad with Greens and Port Vinaigrette

Peaches or apricots are delicious alternatives to the pears. 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons Pear Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon port wine (or more vinegar)
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, plus more to taste 
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 8 cups mixed greens, such as romaine lettuce, endive, radicchio, and arugula, torn, chopped, or sliced 
  • 3 ripe pears, such as Bosc, Bartlett, or d’Anjou 
  • 3 tablespoons mascarpone or another soft, creamy cheese 
  • 1/2 cup toasted macadamia nuts, chopped 
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds for garnish (optional) 

Directions

Step 1

Make the vinaigrette: In a jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine the olive oil, vinegar, port, honey, and the ¼ teaspoons of salt and black pepper, and shake vigorously until emulsified. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt if needed. Pour 3 tablespoons of the vinaigrette onto a shallow plate and reserve the remainder. 

Step 2

Divide the salad greens among six plates. Cut each pear in half and remove the core. Dip the cut sides in the plated vinaigrette. Set up your grill for direct grilling. Grill the pears, cut sides down, until light grill marks appear, about 5 minutes. 

Step 3

While the pears are still warm, arrange a pear half on each salad plate, cut side up, and put a dollop of mascarpone in each cavity. Drizzle with the reserved vinaigrette (shake the jar if necessary), and top with the toasted macadamia nuts and pomegranate seeds, if using. 

Yields 6 servings