Tuna and Olive Pasta Salad

Tuna-Olive-Pasta-Salad-XL

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces (1/2 box) whole-wheat penne pasta
  • 1/4 cup store-bought pesto
  • 1 (6-ounce) can oil-packed tuna, drained
  • 1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives

Preparation

1. Cook pasta according to package directions in salted water; reserve 1/4 cup pasta water. Drain pasta, run under cold water, and return to pot.

2. In a bowl, whisk together pesto and 2 tablespoons reserved pasta water; toss with pasta, tuna, olives, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper in pot. Chill, if desired; serve.

(Source: http://www.health.com)

How to choose a good table olive

Featured-Image1Learn these important points on how to choose a good table olive

Olives are one of those unique foods that don’t only taste delicious, but also offer many health benefits. It is however important to learn how to choose a good table olive, since they vary extensively in appearance, flavour and texture.

We asked the South African Olive Industry Association how to choose a good table olive. Here are a few pointers:

How to choose a good olive1. Looks
The first characteristic to take important notice of is of course the appearance of the olive. The olive must always looks physically appealing and it must make you want to eat it immediately. Physical defects are not good.

2. Aroma
Next important point is smell. A good olive will always smell great. The aroma will give a good indication of how the processing was managed as most of the volatile components are a result of the fermentation process. If not fermented, the aroma is usually that of the added ingredients, like garlic, herbs and various other flavourings. An off-fermentation will be noticeable on the nose, and any off-odour is totally unacceptable in quality table olives.

3. Taste
Right so now we get to the taste. As with anything, taste and flavour are very subjective, so we always suggest that newbies to olives start with a blander product, just like they start new wine drinkers with a sweeter wine. Once hooked on these little delicacies, then move onto products with more flavour, the natural olive flavour in particular. A fully fermented table olive should display a balance between the natural flavour of the fruit, the natural lactic acid and the added salt and vinegar.

4. Texture
A good table olive should have a degree of firmness in the flesh, without being tough or woody. The skin should not be too tough and the flesh should detach from the pit quite easily. The texture is determined by many factors, but most importantly is when the olives are harvested and cultivated. The methods of processing play an important role, which can either maintain the texture of the olive or compromise it.

5. Final tip
It’s important to experience as many different styles and flavours as possible and in so doing, build up a profile of the olives you like.

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

Antipasto platter

By Madiha Hamid – Published: January 15, 2015

37Method

For the dressing:

•  Mix all the ingredients and whisk them lightly.
•  Keep tasting the mixture every few minutes to check for sourness or sweetness. The dressing should be tangy in taste.
•  Adjust the mixture by adding sugar or honey.

For the vegetables:

•  Marinate the sliced vegetables in the dressing for about an hour or so. Allow them to sit in the refrigerator for the juice to sink in.
•  Sprinkle the veggies with oregano and fresh parsley for added taste.

On the side

•  Cut some pita bread into small, triangular pieces and toast it.
•  Add a small bowl of hummus or salsa sauce to dip the vegetables in.

The concept of antipasti

Antipasto (plural: antipasti) is the Italian name given to the foods offered before a main meal — an appetiser, if you will. This is a delightful way to set the stage for the coming feast and invite family and friends to the dinner table. The presentation of antipasti — the different colours, artful composition, varied tastes and the care taken in its presentation  — serve as reminders for guests that it is time for relaxation, pleasure and indulgence.
According to Italian tradition, the ingredients of antipasti are selected on the basis of colour, flavour and how well they complement one another and the main course. A typical antipasti platter includes olives, pepperoni, anchovies, mushrooms, artichokes, cured meats, pickles, different cheeses and vegetable slices dipped in oil or vinegar. It can be served hot or cold, in bite-size plates or as elegant centrepieces from which everyone is served. In Italy, the most common antipasto dish includes a simple display of cured meats like salami or mortadella slices along with hard cheeses garnished with olives, onions, peppers or sun-dried tomatoes.
The Italians generally save antipasti for special occasions and big parties and celebrations. In Milan, enjoying an aperitif (alcoholic drinks served before a meal) has become a sort of institution. The Milanese consider drinking wine while nibbling on some potato chips, olives and peanuts an hour before the main course an essential for the good life. In fact, it would be unthinkable for the Milanese to start a dinner without an aperitif!.

Winter vegetables for antipasti?

Indulge in your favourite cured meats and cheeses, served with a mix of the best vegetables and fruits the winter season has to offer. These include:

(Source: http://tribune.com.pk/story/818737/antipasto-platter/)

6 Health Secrets of Greek Food

Shivangana Vasudeva, NDTV, Modified: December 08, 2014 13:30 IST

490451511Beautiful blue waters, sun-soaked beaches and white-walled towns, Greece is unmatched for its breathtaking landscapes. While that may have taken many of you miles away, my fantasy is incomplete without Greek food. During those long lunches and balmy alfresco dinners, I see myself feasting on some of the finest ingredients in the world. Whether it’s a fresh Greek salad, the famous fava dip or a lovely spinach pie, the Greek table offers a variety of colours and flavours.

For a health freak, who is as paranoid about the health quotient as the flavour, it was love at first bite. Greek cuisine is served with a rich history of about 4000 years. When I recently caught up with Chef Paris Kostopoulos from Greece, I could easily agree that Greek food goes beyond the pleasures of simple eating. There was coffee, curiosity and a whole lot of chatter. I discovered that there is a lot that we can learn from the Greeks when it comes to healthy eating.

By now, you’ve probably heard about the miraculous Mediterranean diet. Most health experts claim that it is one of the healthiest diets to follow and there’s ample scientific evidence to prove that. A Harvard study shows that switching to a Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of heart disease by 30%. It has also been named as the ‘longevity diet’.(Why the Mediterranean Diet Beats All Others)

Here’s our take away from what the Greeks have done right and six reasons to love their cuisine. Continue reading

Parmezan Chicken with minted Zucchini

SERVES: 4,  PREP: 20 mins, COOK: 15 mins, SKILLS: Basic

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INGREDIENTS

– 1/4 cup plain flour, – 1/2 cup plain Greek-style yoghurt, – 1 cup panko breadcrumbs, – 1/2 cup finely grated parmesan, – 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, – 4 x 125g uncrumbed chicken schnitzels, – 1/4 cup olive oil, – 4 zucchini, cut into ribbons, – 400g can cannellini beans, drained, rinsed, – 1/2 cup marinated pitted green olives, halved lengthways, – 2 tablespoons small fresh mint leaves, torn, – 60g baby rocket leaves, – 2 tomatoes, seeded, finely chopped

METHOD

1. Place flour on a plate. Season with salt and pepper. Place yoghurt in a shallow bowl. Combine breadcrumbs, parmesan and parsley on a plate.

2. Coat 1 piece of chicken in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in yoghurt. Coat in breadcrumb mixture. Place on a large plate. Repeat with remaining chicken, flour, yoghurt and breadcrumb mixture.

3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook chicken for 4 to 5 minutes each side or until golden and cooked through. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel.

4. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook zucchini for 2 to 3 minutes or until just softened. Remove from heat. Add beans, olives, mint and rocket. Season with salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine. Serve chicken with zucchini mixture and sprinkle with tomato.

*Recipe by Liz Macri.

(Source: http://www.heraldsun.com.au)

Olive Tapenade with green & black olives

I find this tapenade to be very addicting! I like to eat it with a neutral tasting cracker, such as Blue Diamond Nut-Thins and Le Pain de fleurs Buckwheat Crispbread are also really good.
127-olive-tapenade
Olive Tapenade with green & black olives
Low-FODMAP, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free
makes about 1 1/2 cups

Ingredients
1 can (dr. wt. 6 oz.) pitted, whole black olives, drained
1 can (dr. wt. 6 oz.) pitted, whole green olives, drained
2 tablespoons drained capers
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon garlic oil (try my quick or oven-roasted recipes)
1 1/2 teaspoons anchovy paste
3 large, fresh basil leaves (or 1/2 teaspoon dried)

Directions
Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Whirl until it forms a smooth paste (about 1 minute in a food processor). You can serve this at room temp but I actually like to eat it chilled. Serve with crackers or as a sandwich spread. Store any leftovers in the fridge.

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

Pasta-Stuffed Peppers


Capers, olives and anchovies are the Three Musketeers of Southern Italian cooking. Here they are mixed with tomatoes and pasta to stuff sweet bell peppers before roasting. If the peppers are very large or if you want to make these part of an antipasto and want smaller portions, cut the peppers in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, and stuff each half for smaller individual servings.

Ingredients

pastastuffedpeppers1 large garlic clove, finely chopped | 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil | 3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped | ½ teaspoon dried oregano | 1 (2-oz.) can anchovy fillets, drained and chopped | 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained | ¼ cup chopped pitted imported black olives | Freshly ground pepper | 6 large red or yellow bell peppers | 4 oz. ditalini, tubetti, or other small pasta

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Oil a baking dish just large enough to hold the peppers upright, and bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil.

2. In a large skillet, cook the garlic in the oil over medium heat for one minute until softened. Stir in the tomatoes and oregano and cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about five minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the anchovies, capers, olives, and salt and pepper to taste.

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A tuna sandwich by way of Mediterranean bruschetta

Sometimes the last thing you want to do at the end of a long hot summer day is turn on the oven and make a meal. So here’s a delicious solution that requires no more heat than is necessary to grill up some bread.

tunasandwich

The grilled bread in question, rubbed with garlic, is the sturdy and satisfying basis for bruschetta, an Italian appetizer that can carry many toppings but most often is graced with nothing more or less complicated than chopped fresh tomatoes, olive oil, salt and pepper.

In this case, I’ve topped a large bruschetta with a mound of no-cook tuna salad. In American terms, it’s an open-faced sandwich, and it takes just 30 minutes to prepare. And by the way, if you don’t own a grill, don’t despair: just toast the bread in a toaster.

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Red Rocks: Tomato tartlets with tapenade cream and rosemary salt

The perfect dinner party starter 

  • article-0-1EB18AFE00000578-880_634x601butter for greasing
  • leaves from 2 sprigs rosemary
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • 3-4 large beef tomatoes
  • 125g (4½ oz) pitted green olives
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled
  • 4 anchovy fillets
  • olive oil
  • 3 tbsp crème fraîche
  • 2 sheets ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • salad leaves to serve

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6 and lightly butter two baking sheets. Whiz the rosemary with 1 tbsp sea salt in a spice mill or coffee grinder until finely chopped. Slice each tomato horizontally into 3-4 thick discs (to yield 12-16 in total; save the tops and bottoms for another use). Whiz the olives in a processor with the garlic, anchovies and 1 tbsp olive oil, then beat in the crème fraîche by hand.

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A casual vibe, unpretendious food

Rico’s Cafe. TAPAS: Potato and Sausage Pancakes (mashed potato with sauted onion and Italian sausage, breaded and fried, served with creamy garlic sauce) – Campari Tomatoes Stuffed with Marinated Feta (fresh ripe campari tomatoes filled with feta cheese marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, herbs and spices) – Assorted Mediterranean Olives – Tortilla Espanola (Spanish tapas classic made of egg, onion, and potato. Served with zesty balsamic almond tomato sauce.

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Olive Cheese Straws

Whether for a simple snack or an elegant dinner party, these savory olive cheese straws will surely be a winner.

Olive Cheese Straws | www.kitchenconfidante.comIngredients:

1 sheet puff pastry | 1 large egg | 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese | 1/3 cup grated aged cheddar cheese | 1 cup finely chopped olives |1 tablespoon fresh thyme

Directions:

Defrost the puff pastry according to the package directions. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough until it is about 1/16 inch thick. The size of the pastry will depend on the brand you use, but you will likely have a rectangle about 12×30 inches.

Whisk together the egg with about 1 teaspoon of water and lightly brush onto the pastry.

Olive Cheese Straws | www.kitchenconfidante.comOn one half of the dough, working cross-wise, sprinkle the parmesan, cheddar, olives and thyme. Gently fold over the other half of the dough and lightly press with the rolling pin. Using a floured pizza cutter or knife, cut the edges so you have an even rectangle. Cut even strips and place on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet, twisting if you wish.

Refrigerate the dough while you preheat the oven to 375° F / 375° C.

Bake for about 15 minutes, then gently turn the straws over, and bake for 1-2 minutes more. Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly. Enjoy warm or at room temperature. Once cooled, the straws may be stored in a tightly sealed container for up to 3 days.

(Source: http://kitchenconfidante.com)

Sausage and Black Olive Gluten-free Pizza

From “Cooking Light: Gluten-Free Baking” by Robert Landolphi

20140703_pizza2 teaspoons sugar | 1 package dry yeast | ½ cup warm water (100 to 110 degrees) | 3.65 ounces white rice flour (about ¾ cup) | 1.4 ounces sweet white sorghum flour (about ¹⁄3 cup) | 1.4 ounces tapioca flour (about ¹⁄3 cup) | 1.7 ounces potato starch (about ¼ cup) | 0.9 ounce flaxseed meal (about ¼ cup) | 1 teaspoon xanthan gum | ¼ teaspoon salt | 1 tablespoon olive oil | 2 large egg whites | 1 large egg | Cooking spray | 4 ounces turkey Italian sausage (1 link) | ½ cup lower-sodium marinara sauce | 4 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1 cup) | 2 tablespoons chopped ripe olives

 

Instructions: Dissolve sugar and yeast in ½ cup warm water in a small bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Weigh or lightly spoon flours, potato starch and flaxseed meal into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, potato starch, flaxseed meal, xanthan gum and salt in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended. Add yeast mixture, oil, egg whites and egg; beat at low speed until combined.

Increase speed to medium; beat 2 minutes. Spoon dough onto an 11-by-17-inch baking sheet coated with cooking spray and lined with parchment paper. Lightly coat hands with cooking spray; press dough into an 11-by-12-inch rectangle.

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TOFO Salad (Tomato, Orzo, Feta, Olives) with Fresh Peas

Looking for a quick, easy side for tonight’s dinner? Try our a TOFO Salad (Tomato, Orzo, Feta, Olives) with Fresh Peas. Perfect for summer. Delicious ingredients fresh from Fairway straight to your table. Enjoy!

TOFO Salad (Tomato, Orzo, Feta, Olives) with Fresh Peas

Prep Time: 10 minutes; Cook Time: 20 minutes; Serves: 6-8 people

Ingredients:

  • TOFO-Tomato-Orzo-Feta-Olives-e14036342223351 lb cooked orzo
  • 1 large box of stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup pitted, sliced or roughly chopped kalamata olives
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas (about half a bag)
  • 1 lemon (zest and juice)
  • 4 oz chopped feta or halloumi cheese
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves

Preparation:

Cook orzo according to package directions, substituting water for stock – usually 4 cups for entire container.
While water is boiling for orzo, mince garlic and chop onions. Put garlic and onions in skillet, cook until soft about 3-4 minutes. While cooking, halve the grape tomatoes and chop olives; add to skillet. Cook until the tomatoes begin to break up about 3-5 minutes. Add peas, cook for two minutes.
Remove skillet from heat and transfer pan to a bowl. Add 3 tbsp juice, 2 tsp zest, salt and pepper; whisk to combine. Add orzo, cheese, onion and mint.

By @LifesLittleLookBook for Fairway

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

Roast Tomato, Onion, Feta, Olive And Basil Salad

When I made the zucchini, haloumi and feta fritters recently I wanted a delicious salad to go with it.  I love roast tomatoes and often make a risotto with roasted cherry tomatoes, so I decided to try roast tomatoes (this time Roma tomatoes) in a salad.  The results were delicious.

I love how roasted tomatoes take on a juicy, sweet flavour that is so much more intense than an unroasted tomato.  The roasted onion takes on a sweetness too, and coupled with the fresh creamy danish feta and basil it’s a flavour extravaganza.

gosalad1Ingredients

  • roma tomatoes (large, quartered)
  • purple onion (peeled and quartered)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • pepper, salt
  • 30 grams Chalkidiki olives (green)
  • 50 grams feta (I prefer Danish Feta)
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsps white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 clove garlic (grated)

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Table Olive Processing (Method 1)

fermentationThis method is similar to the natural fermentation process we use. It allows the sugars in the olives to ferment and form lactic acid. The end result will be well worth the effort and the wait. All the wonderful flavours are preserved and this gives the olives its delicious taste.

 Green Olives:

  • Green olives are soaked in a caustic soda solution of between 1,3 and 2,6% for ±15 hours. The time may vary according to the size and ripeness of the fruit. After a few hours, take out an olive and make a cut through the flesh. When the lye has penetrated two thirds of the distance between the surface of the fruit and the pit, it is ready to be washed.
  • Also try to prevent the olives from coming into contact with air, as this can cause the colour to go dark or an unattractive khaki green. Keep in an airtight container (stainless steel, glass or high grade plastic will not affect the taste) through the entire process.
  • In the mean time prepare the brine by dissolving 1 kilogram of salt in 10 litres of clean water.
  • Now rinse the olives many times with clean, cold water to remove soapiness and caustic residue. This step is very important, because you don’t want your olives to taste of caustic soda or “soapy”.
  • Place the olives into a suitable container and cover completely with the brine. Make sure the container has a tight fitting lid.
  • Leave to ferment ±12 months. Taste them from time to time and decide for yourself when they are to your taste.

Bottling: Remove from the brine, rinse with clean water and place into glass jars and cover with hot brine. To make the brine solution: 20g Salt mixed into 1 liter boiling water. Cover immediately and leave to cool. Store in a cool place and refrigerate after opening.  Wine vinegar may be added to taste. You may even add sprigs of fresh herbs like rosemary or thyme or a few cloves of garlic or lemon slices.

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Grilled Potatoes With Feta, Green Olives and Mint

The flavors of the grill penetrate these potatoes to give them a nice smoky accent. The saltiness from the feta and olives gives them a great punch. And the herbs and citrus zest brighten the entire dish.

This potato salad goes nicely with a steak, chicken, fish and it’s also perfect on its own. I love to serve it with a cinnamon and coriander-spiced skirt steak.

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GRILLED POTATOES WITH FETA, GREEN OLIVES AND MINT (Serves 8)

2 1/4 pounds small red-skinned new potatoes | 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided | 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt | 1/2 cup water | 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest | 2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped | 2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, chopped | 2 teaspoons fresh oregano or marjoram leaves, chopped | 1/2 cup Chalkidiki olives, pitted, coarsely chopped | 3 ounces feta, crumbled | Freshly ground black pepper

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11 Reasons You Should Be Eating Olives Daily

Are you looking for healthy snack ideas? Have you ever thought about adding olives to your diet? The truth is olives make a great healthy snack.  Olives contain a lot of vitamins and macro/micro elements which do wonders to our body. Additionally, olives contain a large amount of fatty acids and antioxidants, including lutein, a potent antioxidant that neutralizes the action of free radicals and protects our body from aging.

  • PicMonkey-Collage2Olives contribute to the prevention of diseases of the heart and vessels, as well as oncological diseases.
  • Maslinic Acid in Olive Skin helps prevent against colon cancer.
  • Olives  have a therapeutic effect in arthritis, podagra, osteochondrosis – diseases of the musculoskeletal system.
  • The calcium contained in olives is important in the strengthening of bone tissue, which takes part in the formation of the joints.

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Eat more olives to ward off cancer, improve overall health

(NaturalNews) Olives are much more than a tasty side dish to be enjoyed as an appetizer. They pack a punch when it comes to health, and as such, are ideal to add to meals like salads. In fact, studies have found that olives have compounds that help fight cancer, specifically of the colon and breast (1).12.

One study from the University of Barcelona discovered that the skin of an olive contains maslinic acid, which is known to kill off cancer cells and drastically slow down the growth of colon cancer cells. Impressively, the concentration of maslinic acid in olive skin may be as high as 80 percent (1).

The second study, this time conducted jointly by researchers at the Catalan Institute of Oncology in Girona and the University of Granada, found that phenols in extra-virgin olive oil played a role in the death of breast cancer cells, a process called “apoptosis” (1).

It’s no wonder then, that olives make the George Mateljan Foundation’s list of The World’s Healthiest Foods for their ability to fight cancer, among other things. In a description on their web site, it’s stated that the “Antioxidant phytonutrients in olives may have a special ability to protect DNA (deoxyribonucleic acids)–the key chemical component of genetic material in our cells–from oxygen damage.” (2)

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Miranda Kerr’s beauty secret: Super food salads … feta cheese and olives included!

miranda_storysize_650_052314030436Supermodel Miranda Kerr gives credit to super food salads for her slender figure and radiant complexion.

 The 31-year-old said that she survives on a diet of healthy green smoothies and grilled lean meats, as well as a daily dose of leafy goodness packed with essential vitamins and nutrients, reports femalefirst.co.uk.

Every day I eat a big salad with finely chopped spinach and kale, fennel and macadamia nut oil. (Also) fresh lemon squeezed on that with apple cider vinegar. And feta cheese, olives and cucumber,” she said.

Kerr also said she consumes noni juice, goji berries, chia seeds or maca powder.