French Oil Cured Olives

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Author: Laura S. Kirkley

Serves: 12

INGREDIENTS

2 cups, olives (8 to 10 ounces) – Nicoise, Kalamata, Arbequina, or a blend
1/2 cup, il Fustino Arbequina EVOO
1/4 cup, il Fustino Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Vinegar
1 tablespoon, Herbes de Provence
1 teaspoon, dried lavender

METHOD

  1. Place olives in a medium bowl.
  2. In a small saucepan, combine olive oil and vinegar. Bring to a simmer. Turn off heat and gently stir in herbs and lavender.
  3. Pour the warm mixture over the olives and let them marinate at room temperature for at least 2 hours.
  4. The olives may be made 1 week ahead and kept refrigerated in an airtight container. Return to room temperature before serving.

Herbes de Provence, which typically includes; Basil, Fennel Seed, Marjoram, Thyme, Rosemary, Sage and Summer Savory, is usually found in the herb section of high-end specialty food stores. Lavender, a member of the mint family, lends pungency to the mix. You can use all of these or a subset.

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Barbecue Chicken

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Properly done barbeque chicken needs to be done in three steps: brining and marinating, applying a rub, low and slow cooking with a hot finish. Barbeque sauce is optional and should always be applied at the end.

Serves: 8

INGREDIENTS

2 frying chickens (or 4 whole bone-in chicken breasts) – halved lengthwise
MARINADE:
2 tablespoons, ground mustard
2 cloves, garlic – smashed
1 tablespoon, red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon, dried basil
1/2 teaspoon, oregano
3 tablespoons, brown sugar
2 tablespoons, kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon, freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup, il Fustino Cabernet Sauvignon Red Wine Vinegar
1 cup, peppery olive oil (preferably il Fustino Sicilian EVOO)
DRY RUB:
4 tablespoons, garlic salt
4 tablespoons, brown sugar
2 tablespoons, chili powder
Sweet -Sour-Spicy Barbecue Sauce
2 cups, or Steamin’ Freeman Spicy Barbecue Sauce (available at il Fustino) – optional
1 cup, il Fustino Italian White Wine Vinegar
1/4 cup, tomato paste
2 tablespoons, salt
1/2 cup, brown sugar
2 tablespoons, sweet paprika
2 teaspoons, dry mustard
2 teaspoons, ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon, cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon, onion powder
1/2 teaspoon, garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon, chili powder
4 tablespoons, il Fustino Avocado Oil

METHOD

  1. To prepare the marinade, mix all ingredients in a large non-reactive bowl, except the oil, salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. The mixture should be fairly salty.
  2. Rinse chicken in cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place chicken in the bowl and coat with the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to marinate overnight in the refridgerator.
  3. When you are ready, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature.
  4. Combine all ingredients for the dry rub and mix together.
  5. Pat chicken dry and coat it with the dry rub mixture.
  6. Preheat grill to medium temperature. To check you should be able to hold your hand 3 inches above the grill for 6 to 7 seconds.
  7. Place chicken on the grill skin side up. Cover grill and cook for about 50 minutes. Watch for flare ups. If you get them, spray coals with a spray bottle filled with water.
  8. Flip chicken over to the skin side and turn up the heat to brown the skin, about 15 to 20 minutes. The wing and drumstick will become very tender and pull away at the joints.
  9. Brush with barbeque sauce during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  10. Mix the vinegar, tomato paste, salt, and sugar together in a medium bowl
  11. In another bowl, combine the paprika, dry mustard, black pepper cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and chili powder
  12. Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat
  13. Add the spice mixture and cook until sizzling and fragrant, 30 to 45 seconds
  14. Stir in the vinegar mixture and increase the heat to high
  15. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 5 minutes
  16. Remove the pan from the heat and cool to room temperature.

The sauce can be refrigerated in airtight container for up to 1 week.

Nicoise Salad – Deconstructed

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Author: Laura S. Kirkley

The traditional French presentation of this timeless recipe can make this delicious salad a chore. Deconstructing and plating with a simple arrangement make this dish easy and fun to eat.

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

6 tablespoons, il Fustino Cabernet Sauvignon Vinegar
4 tablespoons, Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons, il Fustino Arbequina Extra Virgin Olive Oil
salt and pepper
16 asparagus spears
2 heads, romaine lettuce – torn into bite-sized pieces
4 eggs – hard boiled
4 large, tomato halfs
2 large, new red potatoes – boiled, cooled and cut into 1′ chunks
2 6 ounces, best quality tuna, Italian hand-packed in oil (Flott or Tonnino) – drained

METHOD

  1. Whisk vinegar, mustard, and olive oil together, season with salt and pepper
  2. Cook asparagus in salted water until crisp, about 3 to 5 minutes. Cool under cold running water. Allow to drain until dry.
  3. Divide lettuce among 4 plates. Slice eggs crosswise. Arrange egg slices along 1 edge of each plate. Divide tomatoes and potatoes evenly. Place 4 asparagus spears across top of each salad, then add half of each jarred tuna.
  4. Drizzle with dressing.

Basil Salad Dressing

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Author: James Kirkley

From a great little restaurant in Canon City, CO

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

1/2 teaspoon, salt
1 teaspoon, garlic powder
2 teaspoons, basil, dry crushed
1/8 cup, extra virgin olive oil
1/8 cup, peanut oil
3 tablespoons, red wine vinegar

METHOD

  1. Blend all ingredient together in small bowl. Let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Top salad with bleu cheese and serve.

My wife and I enjoyed the drive south from Colorado Springs to the Belvedere restaurant in Canon City. We would usually go on weekends since it was about a 45 minute trip. The Belvedere was the classic Italian restaurant, red vinyl booths, chianti bottles hanging from the ceiling, red checkered table cloths, the whole works. We always loved their salad dressing but never got the recipe. Years later, after we moved to Massachusetts my wife was talking to a friend about it and he knew the place, somehow got the recipe, gave it to his sales rep and the sales rep gave it to my wife. If all the effort we went to does not make you want to try it nothing will.