Chicken Skewers with Green Olives

Chicken Skewers
INGREDIENTS
750g chicken thigh fillets | 2 tbsp fresh oregano, finely chopped | 2 tbsp olive oil | 2 tbsp lemon juice, strained | 3 cloves garlic, crushed | 2 tsp finely grated lemon zest | 24 bamboo skewers, soaked | lemon wedges, to serve | Green Olive Dressing | ½ cup pitted green olives | 2 tbsp fresh oregano leaves | ⅓ cup olive oil
METHOD
  1. Cut each thigh fillet into 6 long strips. Combine with oregano, oil, juice, garlic and zest in a medium bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and chill 2 hours.
  2. GREEN OLIVE DRESSING
  3. Coarsely chop 4 olives and set aside. Blend or process remaining ingredients until almost smooth. Transfer to serving bowl and top with chopped olives.
  4. Thread 1 strip of chicken onto each skewer. Cook chicken, in batches, on a heated, oiled grill plate (or grill or barbecue) for 2-3 minutes each side until cooked through.
  5. Serve chicken skewers with dressing and lemon wedges.

(Source: http://www.womansday.com.au)

Easy Valentine’s Day recipe: Heart-Shaped Savoury Bruschetta

Published Wednesday, Feb 11 2015, 17:35 GMT  |  By

Whether you’re taken and want to spoil your loved one, or fancy hosting a Valentine’s get together for your besties, these cute heart-shaped bruschettas are perfect for the occasion.

This super speedy method involves cutting bread into heart shapes, which are grilled in the oven before being topped with a yummy blend of tomatoes, cheese and olives. Fresh and packed with favour, these savoury treats will go down a storm with those special people in your life.

Valentine's bruschetta

© Primula

Ingredients

  • Slices of thick white or brown bread
  • 80g Primula Cheese with chives
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 300g fresh plum tomatoes
  • 2 Spring onions – peeled and finely sliced
  • 50g black olives – finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil – finely chopped
  • Salt & black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • Garnish : fresh basil leaves

Method

1 Cut the bread into 12 heart shaped slices.
2 Brush one side of each heart with the olive oil and place oiled side up under a preheated hot grill until golden brown. Allow to cool.
3 In the meantime, skin the plum tomatoes by cutting a small cross in the base of each tomato and place them into a bowl. Pour boiling water over the tomatoes to cover them and leave to blanch for 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon take the tomatoes out of the hot water, allow to cool. When cool enough to handle, gently peel off the tomato skins.
4 Cut out the stem base and cut into quarters, squeeze out the juice and the seeds and chop the tomatoes into ¼” dice. Drain on kitchen paper.
5 Place the chopped tomatoes, chopped olives, sliced spring onions and chopped Basil into a mixing bowl and season well.
6 Cut the garlic clove in half and rub garlic on to each slice of toasted baguette, then pipe each slice with the cheese around the edge of the bread. Lay the slices on to a serving dish.
7 Spoon the tomato mixture on to the slices and garnish with extra Basil leaves.

(Source: http://www.reveal.co.uk)

Harvesting your olives

harvesting articleTHE three main objectives of harvesting olives are: Pick when ready for preparing eating olives or making olive oil, to cause as little bruising as possible and cause as little damage to the trees as possible. Olives for eating need to be picked while still firm. Olives for oil can be picked at the same stage or left to fully swell to maximise the overall yields.

Some high quality producers still pick by hand. However most olives are allowed to fall naturally or racked, knocked off with long canes, or shaken off with mechanical tree shakers onto nets and then transferred to plastic boxes.

In some areas, to reduce harvesting costs, the ground under trees is laid bare by using weed killers two weeks before shaking the olives onto the ground when they are blown or brushed into heaps for sacking.

Yields can vary from 10 to 110 kilos or more per tree depending on the age, health and pruning of the tree, and the summer and autumn sunshine and rainfalls.

….cont. at:

(Source: https://www.euroweeklynews.com/lifestyle/homes-and-gardens/clodagh-and-dick-handscombe/item/125741-harvesting-your-olives)

Chicken Niçoise recipe

An exciting twist on the traditional tuna dish

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INGREDIENTS
1 tbsp olive oil | 4 chicken breasts | Sea salt, freshly ground black pepper | 4 eggs | 10 anchovy fillets | ½lb green beans, trimmed, blanched | ½lb yellow beans, trimmed, blanched | ¼ red and yellow peppers, cut in strips | 3 red and yellow teardrop tomatoes, sliced in half | ½ cup Niçoise olives | Low-fat vinaigrette | Sprigs of parsley

for the tapenade

3 anchovies | 1½ garlic cloves | ½ tsp rosemary | Extra virgin olive oil, to cover | 4oz sun-dried tomatoes (chopped) | 4oz Kalamata olives (rough chopped) | for the Potato confit | 1lb new potatoes | Oil to cover | 1 garlic clove, crushed | Small bunch thyme

METHOD
Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan. Season the chicken breast with salt and pepper. Place the chicken breasts skin side down for 8-10 minutes.
When the skin is crispy, flip the chicken and cook for another 8-10 minutes. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes depending on the size of the chicken breast. Cook until the juices run clear. Rest for 8 minutes, then slice on an angle.
Bring enough water to cover the eggs to a boil. Place the eggs in the boiling water for 6½ minutes. Shock the eggs in an ice bath for 10 minutes.
Peel and cut off the tip of the egg. Season with salt and pepper.
Make the tapenade. In a food processor, purée the anchovies, garlic and rosemary together with a small amount of olive oil to form a smooth paste.
Combine this with the sun-dried tomatoes and olives in a small pan. Cover with olive oil and slowly bring up to temperature. The mixture should not simmer, but should be hot. Once hot, remove from heat and transfer to a container to cool down.
Place the potatoes in a small pan. Cover with oil. Add the thyme and garlic. Cook gently until fork tender.
Strain potatoes and cool on a baking tray. Slice the potatoes in half.
Toss all the ingredients except the chicken, egg and tapenade in a splash of vinaigrette. Season.
Fan the chicken on the plate and place all the other ingredients around the chicken. Garnish with the tapenade, and serve.

(Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk)

Gerard craft’s orange salad at pastaria

It’s the dead of winter in most of the country, and a salad of sweet, juicy oranges is like sitting in the warmth of the summer sun. Gerard Craft, the five-time James Beard-nominated Best Chef: Midwest, is serving a beautiful Orange Salad tossed with picholine olives, tarragon leaves, red onion and extra virgin olive oil at Pastaria, one of his four St. Louis restaurants (others are Niche, Brasserie by Niche and Taste by Niche).

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“I tend to pick things that I would want to eat myself,” he said of this salad based on a classic Italian dish. “It’s so easy to put together, but it’s always kind of a star because it’s really refreshing and really hits a lot of different notes.”

With its bright flavors, this citrus salad would make a perfect light lunch or side dish to a supper of grilled fish or chicken. It’s a dish that fits well with Craft’s lifestyle; he’s an avid runner and biker. He’s not a fan of dieting, but he does try to eat sweets in moderation. “I have to have a couple of tastes of gelato on a given day — it’s part of what makes me happy,” he says. “Exercise helps me keep the balance, both mentally and physically fit. But I don’t think it’s good for your mind to diet. You gotta have tasty food — doesn’t have to be a lot of it.”

Orange Salad | Serves 10

5 large oranges, such as navel oranges, peeled and sliced into ¼-inch thick rounds
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup tarragon leaves, minced
1/2 cup picholine olives, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt, to taste

Toss all ingredients together, season as needed, and serve immediately.

Andrea Strong is a freelance writer whose work has appeared everywhere from The New York Times to Edible Brooklyn. She’s probably best known as the creator of The Strong Buzz, her food blog about New York City restaurants. She lives in Queens with her two kids, her husband and her big appetite.

More posts from Andrea Strong.

(Source: http://blog.foodnetwork.com)

Health benefits of eating olives

Did you know that eating olives have a vast number of health benefits. Here are just a few

Not only does olives taste delicious, but it also offers many health benefits for you. We chatted to the South African Olive Industry Association and asked them for some interesting olive health facts. Here are a few:

  • 464624329Olives eliminate excess cholesterol in the blood.
  • Olives control blood pressure.
  • Olives are a source of dietary fibre as an alternative to fruits and vegetables.
  • Olives are a great source of Vitamin E
  • Olives act as an antioxidant, protecting cells.
  • Olives reduce the effects of degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, benign and malignant tumours, including less serious varicose veins and cavities.
  • Olives help prevent blood clots that could lead to a myocardial infarction or deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
  • Olives protects cell membranes against diseases like cancer.
  • Olives are a great protection against anaemia.
  • Olives enhances fertility and reproductive system.
  • Olives play an important role in maintaining a healthy immune system, especially during oxidative stress and chronic viral diseases.
  • And just in case these benefits weren’t enough they are also a great aphrodisiac.
  • Olives are nutritious and rich in mineral content as sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus and iodine.
  • Olives provide essential vitamins and amino acids.
  • Olives contain oleic acid, which has beneficial properties to protect the heart.
  • Olives contain polyphenols, a natural chemical that reduce oxidative stress in the brain. So by eating a daily serving of olives helps improve your memory by up to 25%.
  • Just one cup of olives is a great source of iron – 4.4mg.
  • Eating olives can improve the appearance of wrinkles by 20% since they contain oleic acid, which keeps skin soft and healthy.
  • By eating just 10 olives before a meal, you can reduce your appetite by up to 20%. This is because the monounsaturated fatty acids contained in olives slow down the digestion process and stimulate the hormone cholecystokinin, a hormone that sends messages of fullness to the brain. Not only does it do that, but it also helps your body to stimulate the production of adiponectin, a chemical that burns fat for up to five hours after ingestion.

For more information please visit www.saolive.co.za or find us on Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/SaOliveIndustryAssociation

(Source: https://www.destinyconnect.com)

Olives Nutritional Facts: ‘What you need to know when chowing down on these’

Olives are fruits of the tree known as Olea europaea. ‘Olea’ is the Latin word for ‘oil,’ reflecting the olives very high fat content, of which 75% is oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat that has been shown to lower blood cholesterol levels. ‘Europaea’ reminds us that olives are native to the Mediterranean region of Europe.

olives_nutr1 olives_nutr2Olive is a drupe or stone-fruit with a central single seed, surrounded by edible pulp. Their size and shape greatly varies depending on the cultivar type. On an average, a fruit weighs about 3-5 g. Raw fruits are green, which turn yellow to dark as it ripens further. Its fruits are generally picked at stages, whether they destined to be used as table fruits or pressed for oil.

Traditionally, olives have been viewed as very healthy food. The fruit provides calories; contain significant amounts of plant-derived anti-oxidants, minerals, phyto-sterols, and vitamins.

Olives are a moderate source of calories; 100 g of fruits provide just 115 calories. Their calorie content basically comes from fats. Nonetheless, the fruit composes healthy fat in the form of mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) like oleic acid (18:1) and palmitoleic acid (16:1) that help lower LDL or “bad cholesterol” and increase HDL or “good cholesterol” in the blood. Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet, which is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids help to prevent coronary artery disease and strokes by favoring healthy blood lipid profile.

Olive fruit contains tyrosol phenolic compounds such as oleuropein  and pungent and oleocanthal. These compounds are responsible for its bitter taste. Oleocanthal, oleurpein, and its derivative hydroxytyrosol are nature’s most powerful anti-oxidants. Together with vitamin E and carotenoids, they play a vital role fighting against cancer, inflammation, coronary artery disease, degenerative nerve diseases, diabetes etc.

olives_nutr3Studies suggest that oleocanthal has ibuprofen (NSAID) like ant-inflammatory activities. Mediterranean diet that uses olive and its oil may be responsible in part for the lower incidences of coronary artery disease.

Olive contains a good amount of vitamin E. 100 g cured, and canned fruits provide 1.65 mg (11% of RDA) of α-tocopherol. Vitamin E is a powerful lipid soluble antioxidant, required for maintaining the integrity of cell membrane of mucus membranes and skin by protecting it from harmful oxygen-free radicals.

In addition, the fruits contain good amounts of minerals like calcium, copper, iron, manganese, and zinc. Further, they are small sources of B-complex vitamins such as niacin, choline, and pantothenic acid.

Oil expressed from these fruits is recognized as one of the healthiest edible oils since it contains less saturated fat, and composes linoleic (omega-6) and linolenic acid (omega-3) essential fatty acids at the recommended 8:1 ratio.

(Source: http://www.youthhealthmag.com)