Banana Muffins with Olive Oil and Dark Chocolate

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By Jessica at www.howsweeteats.com

yield: about 15 muffins     total time: 35 minutes

ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry or all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 large bananas, mashed
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 6 ounces high-quality dark chocolate, chopped

directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Set aside. Line a muffin tin with liners.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg and brown sugar together until smooth and no lumps remain. Add in vanilla extract, olive oil and bananas, whisking again until combined. Gradually add in dry ingredients, mixing until just incorporated. Stir in the milk and mix until just combined. Fill each muffin liner 2/3 of the way full with batter (I use a 1/4 cup measure to get the muffins to be of equal size). If you’d like, you can place a very thinly sliced banana slice on top of the muffin before baking.

Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until tops are no longer wet and become slightly golden. Remove and let cool until cool to the touch.

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Tuna Poached in Olive Oil

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Recipe by: Chef John on allrecipes.com

“You’re perfectly happy eating regular canned tuna until the day you taste the imported, olive oil-packed tuna and realize exactly what you’ve been missing. You tell people that there’s nothing better, but that’s not entirely true. There’s this. By gently poaching fresh ahi tuna in olive oil, you can create a tuna fish of exceptional quality. The taste and texture are amazing, and you can adapt this in many ways. Besides switching up herbs and seasonings, you can cook the fish to a wide range of doneness.”

Ingredients:

2 (10 ounce) thick-cut ahi tuna steaks

6 sprigs fresh thyme

2 cloves garlic, bruised

1 pinch red pepper flakes, or to taste

2 cups olive oil, or as needed

sea salt to taste
Cook 10 m / Ready In 1 d 1 h 20 m
Let tuna rest at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes.

Combine garlic, thyme, and red pepper flakes in a heavy skillet. Pour olive oil into skillet to reach a depth of 1 inch. Heat oil over medium heat until garlic and thyme begin to sizzle, 5 to 10 minutes.

Place tuna gently in hot oil and reduce heat to low. Cook steaks in hot oil, spooning oil over the top of the steaks constantly, until fish is white and hot, 5 to 7 minutes.

Remove from heat, transfer steaks to a baking dish, and pour hot oil and herbs over the fish. Cool fish and oil to room temperature.

Wrap baking dish tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate steaks for 24 hours. Remove fish from oil and sprinkle sea salt over the top.

Lemon and more Lykovouno EVOO drizzled on top.

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My Grandma’s Greek Dressing Recipe

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measure-olive-oil

Only the easiest and best Greek dressing recipe!

BY LAURIE MCNAMARA at SimplyScratch.com

YIELD: 3/4 cup

PREP TIME: 10 minutes {if that}

COOK TIME: 0 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes

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INGREDIENTS:

1 large clove of Garlic, squeezed through a garlic press

1 teaspoon Dried Oregano (TRY LYKOVOUNO WILD ORGANIC OREGANO)

1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/4 teaspoon Coarse Ground Black Pepper

1/4 cup freshly squeezed Lemon Juice, strained of pulp and seeds

1/2 cup Olive Oil (LYKOVOUNO OF COURSE)

pepper

DIRECTIONS:

Squeeze a clove of garlic into a glass jar or re-sealable container. Measure and add in the oregano, salt and black pepper.

Pour in the quarter cup of strained, freshly squeezed lemon juice and the 1/2 cup of olive oil.

Shake. Pour. Swoon.

Store salad dressing in the fridge. But pull out 10-15 minutes prior to using to warm up the solidified oil or run the jar under warm tap water.

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Grilled Beets With The Easiest Feta Dressing Ever

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Posted by Chadwick Boyd blog at huffingtonpost.com

Recipe and photo courtesy of Josie’s Organics

I created these Grilled Beet and Beef Kebabs to show home cooks how to make a whole meal with beets — from root to leaf — for a fresh, summer family dinner or weekend get-together. The kebabs appeal to beef eaters and veggie lovers alike. The meatiness of the beets matches the beef chunks one-to-one, satisfying the most persnickety of carnivores. The smokiness from the grill brings delicious depth to the beets, delighting vegetarians with a flavorful, filling meal. Paleo adherents are typically more than pleased, too. The coriander-paprika crust adds excitement without fuss for clean-focused eaters.

The trick to getting the kebabs ready is to steam the beets for 15 minutes while the grill preheats. They soften just enough to slide easily onto the wooden skewers with the spice-dusted beef. The sauce is exceptionally easy and comes together while the kebabs are on the grill. Just four ingredients plus a little water transform a briny block of feta into lip-licking ranch dressing to drizzle and dip into. The greens and stalks are chopped and tossed in high quality olive oil (LYKOVOUNO), then salt-and-peppered and piled high on a platter for a colorful and simple salad to complement the kebabs.

In a Hurry Strategies

The recipe is quite flexible, catering to convenience and time restraints. To speed things up, follow these foolproof tips:

  • Microwave the beets in a shallow glass dish with a little water until tender with a fork; keep the red beets separated from the yellow beets so they don’t get stained
  • Steam the beets the night before and store the red and yellow in separate re-sealable plastic bags
  • Buy stew beef already cut into cubes
  • Use a grill pan on the stove top, instead of an outdoor grill

Dress it Up Tips 

Sometimes even the simplest recipes need to be dressed up for more special occasions. Any of these tips will spiff up the beet kebabs with very little extra effort or ingredients:

  • Use chunks of pork tenderloin or chicken
  • Thread wedges of fresh orange in between the beets and beef for a bite of sweetness and added color. Squeeze the grilled orange over the kebabs just before eating.
  • Poach the beets in pinot noir instead of steaming for greater depth of flavor

    INGREDIENTS

    For the kebabs

    • 1 lb. sirloin beef, cut into 1” cubes
    • 2 Tablespoons coriander seeds, coarsely ground
    • 1 Tablespoon paprika
    • 1 teaspoon sea salt
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • 3 red beets, washed, quartered, trimmed, stalks and greens reserved
    • 3 golden beets, washed, quartered, trimmed, stalks greens reserved
    • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil

    For the sauce

    • 1 8 oz. package feta with brine
    • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
    • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
    • 1-2 Tablespoons milk or water (as desired)
    • 1/4 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped

    Directions

    Soak the wooden skewers in water for an hour before grilling to prevent burning.

    In a small bowl, mix together the coriander, paprika, salt and pepper. Place the beef cubes in a large resealable plastic bag. Add the spice mixture and shake until the beef cubes are completely covered. Set aside.

    Fill a medium size pot with 1-2” of water. Place the beets in a steam basket and put into the pot. Bring the water to a boil on medium high heat. Let the beets steam 15-20 minutes until tender with a knife. Remove the basket and let the beets cool about 5 minutes.

    While the beets are steaming, pre-heat the grill to medium high and make the sauce.

    Place the feta, garlic and olive oil in a small food processor. Pulse until thick and creamy. Stream in milk or water until dressing is thin enough to coat the back of a spoon. Fold in the cilantro. Place in a container and refrigerate until ready to serve.

    Thread the skewers with 2-3 pieces of beets and beef. Brush the kebabs lightly with the oil. Place directly on the grill and cook 4-5 minutes on each side until the beef is pink in the center and beets are charred on the edges. Remove from the heat and let rest 5 minutes.

    Slice the beet greens into ½” strips and the stalks into ¼” pieces, toss with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

    Serve the kebabs on a large platter with the sauce and greens on the side (TOSSED IN LYKOVOUNO ORGANIC EVOO).

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Three Summer Grilled Flatbreads

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By Adam Ried at www.bostonglobe.com

Three summery, grilled takes, including one with lemon ricotta, crisp copper, and grapes. Flatbreads are easier than pizza — and can be more delicious

FLATBREAD WITH LEMON RICOTTA, GRILLED GRAPES, AND CRISP COPPA

Makes two 7-inch-diameter flatbreads 

I like hot coppa (a.k.a. capicola), but you can use sweet or deli salami.

Lemon Ricotta 

3        tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2        teaspoons pressed or grated garlic (about 3 medium cloves)

2        teaspoons finely grated zest and 1½ teaspoons juice from 1 lemon

¾      cup thinly sliced scallion whites and greens (about 6 medium scallions)

Salt and pepper

Grapes, Coppa, and Flatbread

Neutral oil, for the grill

12      thin slices coppa (about ¼ ounce each; 3 ounces total)

4        small bunches red grapes, stemmed

Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing

2        7-inch-diameter flatbreads or naans

2        cups roughly chopped arugula

In a medium nonreactive bowl, whisk the ricotta, olive oil, garlic, lemon zest and juice, scallions, and ¾ teaspoon each of salt and pepper until uniform (you should have about 2 cups). Set aside to let the flavors meld for about 15 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper, and lemon juice if necessary.

Meanwhile, prepare a hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill on high. (If using a gas grill, adjust the burners to medium-high and grill with the lid closed.) Clean and oil the grill grate well using the neutral oil. Grill the coppa, undisturbed, until grill-marked, about 1½ minutes. Flip and continue grilling for 1 minute; transfer the slices to a plate (they will crisp up as they cool). Gently brush the grapes with olive oil and grill them, undisturbed, about 2 minutes, carefully turning them once halfway through, then remove them to a plate. Brush the flatbreads with olive oil (if using a gas grill, adjust the burners to medium) and grill them over medium heat until nicely toasted, 2 to 4 minutes per side.

To assemble the flatbreads, spread about half the ricotta mixture evenly over each. Sprinkle each evenly with half the grapes and then half the arugula. Break up the grilled coppa and sprinkle about half the pieces over each flatbread. Cut the flatbreads into pieces and serve at once.

Foiled again: If you don’t have a grill basket for the grapes, cut some slits in a piece of foil and use that instead. Increase the grilling time by a minute or two.

FLATBREAD WITH FETA AND AEGEAN RELISH

Makes two 7-inch-diameter flatbreads

For a nice dinner, add some sliced chicken breast or grilled shrimp, and serve a simple salad alongside.

7        ounces ripe local tomatoes, cored, seeded, and chopped (about 1 scant cup)

Salt and black pepper

¾      cup diced peeled and seeded cucumber

½      cup chopped roasted red pepper

½      cup (about 10) pitted Kalamata olives, quartered lengthwise

¼      cup finely chopped shallot (about 1 medium)

1         teaspoon pressed or grated garlic (about 1 large clove)

1½    teaspoons red wine vinegar

1         tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing the bread

2        tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Neutral oil, for the grill

2        7-inch-diameter flatbreads or naans

1½    cups crumbled feta

In a large strainer set over a bowl, toss the tomatoes with ½ teaspoon salt and set aside to drain, at least 30 minutes. Shake the strainer to drive off more liquid and gently blot the tomatoes dry. In a medium bowl, mix tomatoes, cucumber, roasted pepper, olives, shallot, garlic, vinegar, 1 tablespoon olive oil, parsley, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and black pepper to taste. Adjust the seasoning with salt and black pepper if necessary and set aside.

Prepare a medium fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill on high. (If using a gas grill, adjust the burners to medium and grill with the lid closed.) Clean and oil the grill grate well using the neutral oil. Brush the flatbreads with olive oil and grill them over medium heat until nicely toasted, 2 to 4 minutes per side.

To assemble the flatbreads, sprinkle about half the feta evenly over each. Using a slotted spoon, spread about half the relish evenly over the feta, cut the flatbreads into pieces, and serve at once.

FLATBREAD WITH GRILLED AVOCADO AND SIMPLE SALSA

Makes two 7-inch-diameter flatbreads

1         pound ripe local tomatoes, cored, seeded, and roughly chopped (about 3 scant cups)

Salt and pepper

1         teaspoon pressed or grated garlic (about 1 large clove)

1         tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing onions, avocado, and bread

¼      cup chopped cilantro

2        medium onions (about 1 pound), peeled, cut into ¾-inch-thick slices, and threaded onto skewers if desired

1         large ripe-but-firm Hass avocado, halved and pitted

2        teaspoons chili powder

Neutral oil, for the grill

2        7-inch-diameter flatbreads or naans

In a large strainer set over a bowl, toss the tomatoes with ¾ teaspoon salt and set aside to drain, at least 30 minutes. Shake the strainer to drive off more liquid, discard it, and gently blot the tomatoes dry. In a medium bowl, mix tomatoes, garlic, 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt, pepper to taste, and cilantro. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary and set aside.

Meanwhile, brush the onions and avocado halves with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste; sprinkle each avocado half evenly with 1 teaspoon chili powder. Prepare a hot fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill on high. (If using a gas grill, adjust the burners to medium-high and grill with the lid closed.) Clean and oil the grill grate well using the neutral oil. Grill the avocados cut sides down and undisturbed, 3 to 5 minutes, and the onions until just tender and browned, 12 to 20 minutes, turning them over at 6 minutes and as necessary thereafter. Brush the flatbreads with olive oil (if using a gas grill, adjust the burners to medium) and grill them over medium heat until nicely toasted, 2 to 4 minutes per side.

To assemble the flatbreads, scoop the avocado flesh from the skins and cut it into thin slices; chop the onions. Mash half the avocado slices evenly over each flatbread; spread about half the chopped onions evenly over the avocado. Using a slotted spoon to allow extra juices to drain back into the bowl, spread about half the tomato mixture evenly over the onions on each flatbread. Cut them into pieces and serve at once.

Adam Ried appears regularly on “America’s Test Kitchen.”

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