Some of our favorite members of the Brassica family, brussels sprouts, star in this vegan-friendly mélange of seasonal vegetables. Large king oyster or shiitake mushrooms can be found at many supermarkets or Asian food emporiums. Feel free to substitute other meaty mushrooms, such as portobellos or creminis.
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh brussels sprouts, halved (or quartered, if large)
- 8 ounces fresh red or white pearl onions
- 8 ounces medium shallots, peeled and halved lengthwise
- 6 to 8 fresh thyme sprigs
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided use
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt (kosher or sea)
- 1 pound king oyster or shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Toss together the brussels sprouts, pearl onions, shallots, thyme, and 1/4 cup of olive oil on a large rimmed baking sheet; sprinkle with the pepper and 1 teaspoon of salt. Roast until tender and browned, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven; remove and discard the thyme sprigs.
While the brussels sprout mixture roasts, heat the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms; cook, stirring occasionally, until just starting to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low; cook, stirring occasionally, until nicely browned and nearly crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the soy sauce, smoked paprika, and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Transfer the mushrooms to paper towels to drain. Stir the mushrooms into the brussels sprout mixture just before serving.
Serves 8 to 10 — Recipe from Food and Wine, November 2020
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)
In the spirit of cucina povera (poverty cuisine), Italian mothers and grandmothers have repurposed for generations a thick vegetable stew (every family has their own recipe) by submerging bread and cheese in it and reheating.
- 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 carrot, trimmed, peeled, and chopped
- 1 celery stalk, chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced peeled garlic
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups cooked or canned cannellini beans
- One 15-ounce can whole
peeled tomatoes, crushed with a spoon or your fingers
- 4 cups vegetable or other stock, such as chicken or beef
- 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
- 1 sprig of fresh thyme
- 3/4 pound chopped kale or escarole
- 4 large, thick slices country-style bread, toasted
- 1 small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Put 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large oven-proof pot over medium heat. When it’s hot, add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic; sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft, 5 to 10 minutes.
Heat the oven to 450°F. Drain the beans; if they’re canned, rinse them under cold running water, then drain again. Add them to the pot along with the tomatoes and their juices, as well as the stock, rosemary, and thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat so the soup bubbles steadily; cover and cook, stirring once or twice, until the flavors meld, 20 to 30 minutes.
Fish out and discard the rosemary and thyme stems and stir in the kale. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Lay the bread slices on top of the stew so they cover the top and overlap as little as possible. Scatter the red onion slices over the top, drizzle with the remaining 3 tablespoons oil and sprinkle with Parmesan.
Put the pot in the oven and bake until the bread, onions and cheese are browned and crisp, 10 to 15 minutes. (If your pot fits under the broiler, you can also brown the top there.) Divide the soup and bread among 4 bowls and serve with extra virgin olive oil for drizzling.
Serves 4 — Recipe adapted from cooking.nytimes.com
Tuscan kale is sold under several names and might be labeled dinosaur kale, black kale, cavolo nero, or lacinato kale. Grana Padano is an aged cow’s milk cheese from Emilia-Romagna. If you can’t find it, substitute Parmigiano-Reggiano.
- 1/2 pound Tuscan kale
- 1/2 cup shaved Grana Padano
- 1/4 cup shelled green pistachios
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
- 1 small clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt (kosher or sea), or more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste
Remove the tough ribs from the kale and slice the kale leaves into 1-inch ribbons; place in a large salad bowl. Add the Grana Padano and nuts. Whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, olive oil, and salt and pepper. Pour over the salad and toss.
Serves 4 — Recipe courtesy of the Fresh-Pressed Olive Oil Club