Paccheri Pasta With Swordfish, Olives, Capers And Mint Recipe


Recipe from Franny’s of Brookly
by Melissa Clark, Andrew Feinberg and Francine Stephens @

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Serving Size: 4 -6
1 1/2 pounds skinless swordfish steaks, cut into 1x1x 1/2-inch chunks
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling. (LYKOVOUNO)
3 tablespoons salt-packed capers, soaked, rinsed and drained or drained brined capers
1/4 cup Nocellara or Cerignola olives, pitted and roughly chopped
4 teaspoons chopped garlic
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, preferably Sicilian
1 teaspoon chili flakes
1 pound paccheri
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
3 tablespoons chopped mint
fresh lemon juice

Season the fish with salt and pepper. In a very large skillet, warm 1/4 cup of the olive oil over high heat. Add the fish and cook, without moving, until browned on one side, about 2 minutes. (Cook in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the pan.) Transfer the fish to a platter and set aside.
In the same skillet, warm the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the capers and fry until they start to brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the olives, garlic, fennel seeds and chili flakes and cook until everything is toasty and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons of water to the pan. Remove from the heat.
In a large pot of well-salted boiling water, cook the pasta according to the package instructions until 2 minutes shy of al dente; drain.
Toss the paccheri into the skillet with the caper mixture, along with the swordfish. Cook over medium heat until the pasta is al dente, 1 to 2 minutes, adding more water if the sauce seems dry. Stir in the parsley and mint and season with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
Divide the pasta among four individual serving plates or bowls and finish each with drizzle of olive oil.


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Olive Oil Biscotti



Recipe supplied by Francesco Mazzei, L’Anima restaurant


Makes 50-60
230ml extra virgin olive oil
170g caster sugar
130g demerara sugar
1 vanilla pod
1 lemon zest
2 eggs
1 tbsp milk
330g plain flour, sifted
A pinch of salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1 Mix together the olive oil, sugars, vanilla and lemon zest. Add the eggs and milk, and mix well, then add the sifted flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda, and let the dough rest for 24 hours.

2 Preheat the oven to 170C/340F/gas mark 3-4. Roll the dough into small balls, flatten slightly then bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes, until golden brown.

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Smoked eggplant ratatouille at

6 pieces smoked eggplant, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) chunks

2 medium sized yellow zucchinis, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) chunks

1 medium-sized green zucchini, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) chunks

2 medium-sized red onions, cut into wedges

10 baby heirloom or cherry tomatoes, whole, stems removed

1 Fresno chili, thinly sliced

4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

1 sprig rosemary, removed from stem and finely chopped

½ bunch basil, larger leaves roughly chopped, stems thinly sliced, smaller leaves and buds picked and set aside in fridge in between moist paper towels (to be used later for garnish)

1 ½ cups passata di pomodoro (seeded, uncooked tomato purée)

½ cup Bragg liquid soy seasoning

Smoked eggplant

6 pieces small Japanese eggplant, cut in half lengthwise and scored to better soak up the marinade

½ cup olive oil

¼ cup white wine vinegar

6 cloves garlic, smashed

1 tablespoon fleur de sel

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Smoking the eggplant

¹/³ cup long-grain rice

¼ black loose-leaf tea

1 teaspoon white sugar

Seed-crusted halibut

4 halibut filets, boneless (approximately 400 grams total)

1 tablespoon olive oil

Fleur de sel and fresh cracked black pepper to season

Seed crust

Seed crust

2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds, roughly chopped

2 teaspoons black sesame seeds

2 tablespoons lightly toasted sliced almonds, rough chopped

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon white sugar

Zest of one lemon, plus 2 tablespoons juice

8 tbsp butter, browned


Smoked eggplant ratatouille

Preheat oven to 450 F.

Combine the smoked eggplant, zucchini, onion, tomatoes, sliced chilli and garlic, and toss together on a parchment-lined baking sheet with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast in oven for 20-30 minutes until just starting to brown, but not fully cooked.

Remove from oven and transfer the veg and juices to a medium-sized casserole along with the rosemary, basil stems, passata and Bragg’s. Stir to combine and simmer for 35 minutes over low heat until reduced and sweet.

Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper as desired. Keep covered and warm on the back of the stove until fish is cooked and ready to plate, reserving the roughly chopped basil leaves to add at the last possible moment. This will help preserve their bright green colour.

Smoked eggplant

Mix together in zip-lock bag, massaging the marinade into the eggplants. Let sit in the fridge for 2-3 hours.

Smoking the eggplant

To set up a stovetop tea smoker, you will need: Wok, with a lid if possible; aluminum foil; Metal rack, large enough to sit flat at top of wok, without obstructing the lid or being too close to the bottom

Line inside of wok with 4 layers of aluminium foil. Combine the rice, tea and sugar and place in the bottom of the foil-lined wok. Place metal rack at top of wok and place the marinated eggplants on the rack. Cover wok with lid of tent with aluminum foil as necessary. Turn exhaust fan on full above the stove and open your kitchen windows. Over high heat toast the tea mixture for 3-5 minutes until wisps of smoke begin to emerge from the wok. Continue to toast for 5 minutes without burning the tea and then remove the wok from the heat. Allow eggplants to sit covered in the smoke for another 10 minutes. Remove the lid and allow to cool. Eggplants should be smoky and only slightly cooked.

Seed-crusted halibut

Preheat your oven broiler to its highest setting. Brush the halibut filets with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on an aluminum-lined tray and cook under broiler for 3-4 minutes, or until almost cooked. Remove seed crust from the parchment and lay a piece over top of each filet. Return to the oven and cook for another 1-2 minutes until butter is melted and seeds are golden brown. Remove and serve immediately.

To plate, stir the roughly chopped basil into the warm ratatouille and place a big scoop into the bottom of 4 medium-sized bowls. Place the broiled fish on top in the middle and drizzle with olive oil. Garnish each dish with the small, fresh basil leaves you put aside earlier. Serve immediately.

Seed crust

Place pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, chopped almonds, salt, sugar, lemon juice and zest in a small heatproof bowl.

Melt butter over medium-high heat in a small, light-coloured casserole dish (which will make it easier to see as it starts to brown). Stir and cook until water releases and butter reaches 212 F. Continue stirring, ensuring not to burn any of the milk fat on the bottom of the casserole dish. Cook until butter starts to foam. It should smell nutty and have a golden brown colour. Remove from heat and pour directly over the seed mixture. Stir to combine. Spread flat over a small parchment-lined tray creating (approximately) a 6-inch x 8-inch rectangle. Place in the fridge for 2 hours to allow the butter to harden around the seeds. Cut the larger rectangle into four smaller ones. Keep these in the fridge until ready to use on the halibut.

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Mediterranean Diet Lowers Death Risk for Heart Patients

Olive oil

Olive oil


New research indicates that the Mediterranean Diet reduces the mortality risk for heart disease patients more than taking statin medications.

Being that heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide, the fact that dietary habits can make such a huge impact is remarkable, though in some ways not surprising.

The Mediterranean diet, characterized by high consumption of vegetables, fruit, olive oil, nuts, seeds, fish and poultry, is well known for its many protective benefits from various diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s and cardiovascular disease.

A new study, however, looked at participants who already suffer cardiovascular disease (heart attacks, strokes, blocked arteries), which is different than many studies that evaluate general populations.

The study, titled ‘Higher adherence to Mediterranean diet is associated with lower risk of overall mortality in subjects with cardiovascular disease: prospective results from the MOLI-SANI study,’ is not yet available for full review.

Giovanni de Gaetano, head of the Department of Epidemiology and Prevention at the IRCCS Neuromed Institute in Pozzilli, Italy, presented the abstract of the paper at the ESC Congress in Rome on August 28, according to a press release from the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

In brief, the study was an observational study looking at approximately 1,200 participants out of 25,000 in the EPIC study. Food intake was evaluated via a food frequency questionnaire and the Mediterranean diet score (MDS) was used to evaluate the relationship between MedDiet consumption and total mortality.

Only 208 deaths occurred during the 7.3-year follow-up and the authors conclude that “a 2-point increase in the MDS was associated with a 21 percent reduced risk of death.” This was even greater, 37 percent, when participants had top-category adherence to the MedDiet.

“The major contributors to mortality risk reduction were a higher consumption of vegetables, fish, fruits, nuts and monounsaturated fatty acids — that means olive oil,” said Marialaura Bonaccio, the lead author of the research.

Professor de Gaetano also suggests that the mechanisms are likely related to other factors that have been seen as protective in other diseases: for example, the influence of a MedDiet with olive oil on inflammatory and oxidative stress factors that initiate and promote disease states.

In recent years, statins have been criticized by researchers as being ineffective and many of the studies on statins have not been independent, but funded by pharmaceutical companies. And, like most medications, statins come with adverse side effects.

Although more research will now be needed, Jeremy Pearson, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation, said for The Telegraph that: “This study suggests that even if you are already receiving medical care, if you add a Mediterranean diet, it will have further benefit.

“Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, even if you have had a heart attack or stroke is really important and continues to benefit you.”

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Roarin’ Shrimp And Grits





¼ lb. panko

6 oz. grits

¼ cups water

1 oz. butter

pinch salt and pepper

½ lb. tiger shrimp

½ lemon

3 bay leaves

12 cups heavy cream

olive oil

12 cloves garlic


Throw 1 oz. of butter into a pan and add water. Add salt and pepper as you’d like. When water starts boiling add grits. When it’s firm throw panko in. Mix together in a one-inch pan and let it cool in the fridge for about eight hours. Once it’s cooled cut into squares that measure to either one inch to two and a half inches.

Boil water and add tiger shrimp. Toss in half a lemon, pepper and three bay leaves. Boil for approximately three minutes and chill for six minutes in a cooler (or chill on ice).

Heavy Cream:

Add olive oil to a pan and add heavy cream. Incorporate garlic and parsley and mix together. Add butter and add a spoonful of olive oil and garlic salt to taste.

After grit cakes have cooled, cut into pieces and warm in oven for five minutes at 300 degrees. Sautee grit cakes in pan 1.5 minutes even each side. Toss shrimp in heavy cream.

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