Stir Them Into Soups, Stews And Sauces
Sun-dried tomatoes, when added in soups, stews and sauces just before serving, add a rich colour to the dish. Apart from this, they also add a nice piquant aroma to any dish they are added in. Pair them with black pepper and you’re done for the day.
Use Them In Place Of Tomatoes
If you are tired of having tomatoes and wish to experiment with something same yet with a different texture, replace it with sun-dried tomatoes. You can have them in sandwiches, pasta, pizzas or any other dish of your choice.
Chop And Add To Salad
Sun-dried tomatoes in the salad are a perfect addition. You can add them in tuna and chicken salad to increase the nutritional value of your meal. Alternatively, slice and serve them in pasta salads.
So, what are you waiting for? Make the best of these tangy delights and add them to your diet more often.
#inolivia #mediterraneanlife #healthyfood
A decade or so ago, party dips were mostly relegated to guacamole and salsa. The surge in popularity of the heart-healthy Mediterranean diet (#Mediterraneanlife), however, has seen a huge spike in the number of hummus enthusiasts, a fortunate event since the dip is both delicious and healthy.
Hummus (#Inolivia) is a great trifecta of macronutrients — combining a good source of protein, fiber and healthy fat. At the same time it’s also a micronutrient dense dip providing good calcium and iron content, and packed with vitamin E and B and minerals like magnesium and potassium.
The main ingredient in hummus is chickpeas, which are plentiful in the Mediterranean. One of the healthiest legumes out there, chickpeas pack a seriously impressive portfolio of benefits. Chickpeas are high in plant-based protein, magnesium, potassium, and have a low glycemic index. Chickpeas also contain fiber. Fiber helps with regularity and helps to prevent constipation. This high fiber content can help promote weight loss and cardiac health.
The next best-known component of hummus is tahini, a paste made from ground sesame seeds, that’s also full of protein. Sesame seeds are packed with vitamins and minerals like folate, calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, selenium and zinc.
Other commonly included ingredients are some form of oil, garlic, lemon juice and various ground spices for flavor, like cumin. The olive oil used to puree the chickpeas is a source of healthy and unsaturated fat.
The debate over the origin of hummus is old — probably as old as hummus itself. The Greeks like to claim it as their own, but the Arabs are equally adamant in their claims. Even the Israeli’s claim it, but we’ll get to that later. So, who is right? The honest truth is that no one really knows for sure.
The Greeks and Egyptians were trade partners for centuries which may explain with many of the foods in Greek and Arab cuisine are similar, if not identical.
Regardless of where it’s originally from, hummus is a delicious dip and spread that’s enjoyed by all cultures, not just Greek and Middle Eastern. You can now find in just about every western supermarket and many mainstream restaurants. so it’s become a great example of a “crossover” food, so much so that some people find it so common now that they don’t even realize its roots.
The hard work is done by the trees… We at Inolivia – Rich & Pure Flavors are doing the rest!
Essentially a part of the Mediterranean cuisine, hummus comes as a healthy alternative to dips and spreads loaded with saturated fats.
Holly hummus! Made from crushed chickpeas blended with lemon juice, olive oil, tahini, garlic, and salt, this spread is an excellent source of vitamins B6 and C, protein and fibre. It promotes weight loss as the fibre content in hummus keeps you full for longer and curbs your calorie intake. According to recent research, dietary fibre may reduce the risk of colorectal cancers as it is rich in folate (a type of vitamin B). Moreover, the olive oil used in hummus provides heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. Essentially a part of the Mediterranean cuisine, hummus comes as a healthy alternative to dips and spreads loaded with saturated fats. It comes with different herbs and flavours. Here is how you can include hummus in your meals to make them more yummy and health-friendly.
To make your soup more healthy and creamy, stir in a few tablespoons of your favourite flavour of hummus.
Alternative For Mayonnaise and Sour Cream
Use hummus as a spread over your sandwich or burger, instead of using mayonnaise or sour cream. It is a more nutritious and tastier substitute. Take a slice of toasted whole-grain rye bread and top it with hummus and veggies your choice.
You can use it with your salads to add a dash of interesting colours. Hummus comes in varied flavours and hues. For example, beet hummus is red while the parsley-based version is green. Even a dollop of flavoured hummus will make your salad more lip-smacking.
Tomato Filling And Topping
Hummus makes a great topping for sliced tomatoes. Take cherry tomatoes, cut off the tops, scoop out the seeds and then fill each one with hummus by using a piping bag. You can also take bigger tomatoes, fill them with hummus to make a scrumptious appetizer.
Hummus could lend a unique taste to your pasta sauce. Combine two parts hummus with one part vegetable stock. Add roasted red peppers, olives, or fresh tomatoes for a fresh Mediterranean twist.
It’s the most significant meal of the the day and thousands of tourists — especially from the U.S., will be trying a traditional Greek breakfast this summer — but how does it measure up against its U.S. counterpart, greekreporter.com notes in the following recent article:
These days we are all much more health conscious, so probably the quintessentially all-American staples of waffles, bacon, hash browns, fries and eggs done one of a dozen ways, is now something of a guilty pleasure.
In Greece, depending on the region, the traditional breakfast still conforms to the healthy Mediterranean diet. Olives and olive oil have their role, as do fresh tomatoes and traditional cheeses and yoghurts. Some regions also have traditional soups for breakfast. And, like its American version, the Greek breakfast often incudes eggs.
Greeks also love fresh bread and in all its main towns and cities, people still purchase fresh bagel-like koulouri from street sellers.
On the sweet side, Greeks will often have local honey or tahini plus fruit. For those on the go there is also Greece’s vast array of pies filled with cheese, spinach and so on.
Added to all of the above, of course, is the ubiquitous Greek coffee, a treat which is said to carry its own health benefits.
While what is on offer in hotels across the mainland and Greek islands is perhaps not what many Greeks eat every morning, it still reflects the cuisine’s Mediterranean roots.
And while frozen yoghurt and honey might be something of a tourist attraction, it still sounds more healthy than waffles with syrup.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to choice — so, which do you prefer?
Eisensalze statt Sonnenreife
Schwarze Oliven gelten als reif, aromatisch und mild. Aber Vorsicht: In den meisten Fällen ist die Farbe künstlich. Hier erfahren Sie, wie Sie zuverlässig eingefärbte schwarze Oliven erkennen.
Schwarze Oliven gelten als kulinarische Verkörperung der typischen, mediterranen Ruhe. Denn Oliven bekommen die dunkle Farbe nur, wenn Sie in den warmen Sonnenstrahlen langsam reifen. Erst sind die Steinfrüchte grün, später violett und schließlich, wenn sie vollkommen sonnenverwöhnt sind, schwarz. Denn tatsächlich ist die Farbe der Oliven nur der Indikator des Reifegrades, die Sorte der Pflanze spielt hierbei keine Rolle. Jede schwarze Olive war einst grün – und mit genügend Zeit verdunkelt sich auch jede grüne Olive am Baum. Ein langsames, unhektisches und entspanntes Reifen, das Sie schmecken: Sind die grünen Oliven noch intensiv, leicht bitter und manchmal etwas scharf, schmecken ihre dunkleren Pendants deutlich milder und komplexer. Gleichzeitig haben schwarze Oliven eine zartere Konsistenz. Kein Wunder also, dass schwarze Oliven als qualitativ hochwertiger gelten.
In Agia Paraskevi, the local Museum of Industrial Olive Oil Production will be hosting the olive oil cooking event, combining tradition and modern cooking trends. Olive oil, whole olives and olive paste will have a central role in the recipes, while the dishes will be presented in traditional clay utensils. The event will be accompanied by speeches regarding the pottery art of Lesvos.
Upgrade classic deviled eggs with olives, which also give the dish a health boost: they’re loaded with vitamin E and you get a lot of good, healthy fats and great flavor.
12 large eggs | 3 tablespoons crème fraîche, plus more if needed | 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard | 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper | 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil | Juice of 1⁄2 lemon | 1/4 cup fresh rosemary leaves | Coarse sea salt to taste | Chopped Halkidiki olives (pitted) to taste | Paprika to taste
2. Add the eggs and cook for 8 minutes. Drain the eggs and transfer to the ice water. When cool, peel and cut each egg in half lengthwise. Transfer the yolks to the bowl of a food processor; refrigerate the whites.
3. Add the crème fraîche, mustard, cayenne, olive oil, lemon juice, rosemary, and a pinch of salt to the food processor. Process until smooth, scraping the bowl occasionally. The mixture should be soft enough to pipe through a piping bag, but not too loose. If it’s stiff, pulse in another tablespoon of crème fraîche.
4. Transfer the mixture to a piping bag or resealable plastic bag with a hole snipped in one corner.
5. Arrange the egg whites cut-side up in a single layer on a serving platter. Pipe the yolk mixture into the egg white cavities.
6. Top each with chopped Halkidiki olives.
7. Sprinkle with paprika and serve immediately, or refrigerate for up to 2 days.
by Nadine Levy Redzepi
- Cod, haddock, or scrod fillets – 4 (about 7 ounces/200 g each)
- Extra-virgin olive oil – 5 tablespoons (75 ml)
- Plum (Roma) tomatoes – 4
- Green olives such as Castelventrano – 10
- Fresh oregano sprigs – 5
- Fine sea salt
- Crusty bread such as ciabatta – 2 slices
- Garlic cloves – 2
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
2. Pat the fish dry with paper towels. Slice off the thin side flap from each fillet, saving for another use. Coat the bottom of a baking dish large enough to hold the fish in a single layer with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Place the cod in the dish. Drizzle with another 2 tablespoons of the oil.
- You want only the thick center portion of each fillet so the fish cooks evenly and doesn’t overcook.
3. To core the tomatoes easily, slice each one downward next to but not through the stem. Make two angled cuts into the larger half to release the core and discard.
4. Squeeze each tomato half over the fish, letting the juice and seeds fall mainly on the fish. Arrange the tomatoes around the fish. Smash each of the green olives under the flat side of your knife and discard the pit. Scatter the olives over the tomatoes. Chop the oregano leaves, discarding the stems, and sprinkle over the fish and vegetables. Season very lightly with salt.
- You can choose from more delicious olive varieties if you are willing to take the pits out yourself.
- This technique is so easy and much quicker than using an olive pitter!
5. Tear the bread into small pieces and process into coarse crumbs in a food processor. Pour the crumbs into a medium bowl. Crush the garlic cloves with the flat side of your knife and discard the papery skins. With the machine running, drop the garlic through the feed tube of the processor to mince it. Return half of the crumbs to the processor with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and pulse to moisten. Add the remaining bread crumbs and pulse to combine everything. Use a spoon to sprinkle the garlic bread crumbs evenly over the fish and tomatoes.
6. Bake until the topping is golden brown and the fish flakes easily when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Serve hot, right from the dish.
This appetizer includes all the classic Greek ingredients, and comes together quickly.
- 1 package (6 ounce) feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
- 2 ounces sun-dried tomatoes, softened
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon black olives, drained and chopped
- In a food processor, place the feta cheese, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes and oregano. Using the pulse setting, blend the mixture until smooth. Transfer to a medium bowl.
- Blend in the olives by hand or with a spoon.
- Refrigerate until serving.
by THE WEEKEND COOK with Maggie Cooper
OLIVES are very much an acquired taste, one that, thankfully, I learned to enjoy quite a few years ago. We grow terrific olives here in Australia. Our country has so many different climates in so many areas that there are few crops we cannot manage here once good farming practices are applied.
I often wonder how we first discovered olives were edible; the raw fruit is not thanks to a bitter compound called oleuropein. Depending on the age and variety of the fruit it can be leached out by splitting the olives and soaking them in water – changed daily – for a length of time (up to a month). Other varieties need to be cured by one of several methods using salt, brine or lye. So it’s quite a process to convert them to the tasty nibble we enjoy with drinks, on pizzas or as an addition to many Mediterranean recipes. I like to buy a good brand of Aussie olive and then marinate them myself. They are delicious served warmed with pre-dinner drinks. Just about any of your favourite herbs and spices can be used. My personal choices are thyme, rosemary, garlic, nigella (black cumin) seeds and a little dried chilli. Feel free to experiment: oregano, sage, marjoram, regular cumin seeds, mustard seeds, mandarin peel, and peppercorns are alternatives.
INGREDIENTS: 2 cups cured mixed olives
1/4 cup cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil
zest of a small lemon
2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
3 tsp fresh thyme leaves
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 tsp fennel or nigella (black cumin) seeds (optional)
1 tsp dried chilli flakes (optional)
METHOD: Drain brine from olives and discard.
In a small saucepan, combine oil, lemon zest, garlic and herbs, reserving one sprig of rosemary for garnish.
Add fennel or nigella seeds and chilli flakes if using.
Heat oil over a medium heat until garlic just starts to colour; don’t allow it to brown as it will become bitter.
Remove from heat and stir in the olives.
Cover and allow to sit for at least 15 minutes, preferably overnight.
Reheat gently before serving.
Contact Maggie at firstname.lastname@example.org
1.5 – 2 c olives of choice, something like Kalamata, Nicoise, Liguria, Amfissa (see here)
1 tbsp sweet pepper flakes
2 tsp dry thyme (if fresh use less)
1.5 tsp dry oregano (if fresh use less)
2 – 3 garlic cloves, smashed with the side of your knife
olive oil, enough to mostly cover the olives
In a large bowl combine all the ingredients and let sit at room temperature for at least 45 minutes before serving.