Fennel Infused Olive Oil

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Fennel Infused Olive Oil
Oil infused with sweet fennel flavors highlighted with notes of citrus and spiciness.
Course Main Dish, Salad
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Course Main Dish, Salad
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan and press as much of the fennel below the oil as possible (the oil will barely cover everything at first but it will cook down later). Bring to a simmer over medium heat, cover, and reduce to low to maintain a very low simmer. Cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally, or until the flavor the oil has reached your liking. Remove from heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium mixing bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature, transfer to an air-tight container and store in the refrigerator.
Recipe Notes
  1. I tried a batch using only a few orange zest strips and didn't get a lot of orange flavor. The next batch I increased it to 6 strips and the orange flavor was pronounced. Hopefully that helps you decide how many to use.
  2. I tried a batch using 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes and didn't get much of any heat. The next batch I increased it to 1 teaspoon and while not spicy, there is a little kick on the finish.
  3. I haven't tried cooking the oil any longer than 1 hour as I assumed all of the fennel flavor has been extracted at that point. But I would love to know the results if you cook it longer!

Zucchine Sott’olio: Zucchini Preserved in Oil

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Zucchine Sott'olio: Zucchini Preserved in Oil
Adapted from Preserving Italy by Domenica Marchetti
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
quart
Ingredients
Aleppo Spiced Oil
Pickled Zucchini
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Passive Time 2 hours
Servings
quart
Ingredients
Aleppo Spiced Oil
Pickled Zucchini
Instructions
Aleppo Spiced Oil
  1. Add oil and spices together in a small saucepan, cover and heat over medium-low until just starting to simmer, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow spices to infuse the oil for at least an hour, longer if possible.
Pickled Zucchini
  1. Layer the zucchini in a colander set over the sink, sprinkling lightly with salt as you go. Place a heavy object on the top to weigh it down (I used canning jars). Let stand for 1 hour, then pat the slices dry with paper towels or clean kitchen towels.
  2. Combine the vinegar, water, and 2 tablespoons of salt in a large pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve the salt. Add the zucchini, using a wooden spoon to submerge it in the brine. Cover and boil until the zucchini slices have lost their bright green color, about 3 minutes. Remove the slices from the brine and lay them on clean kitchen towels to dry for 1 to 2 hours.
To Finish
  1. Layer the dry zucchini in a quart sized canning jar and pour Aleppo oil over the top. You should have just enough to cover the zucchini but if not, pour over additional oil. Screw the lids on tightly and let sit at room temperature for 24 hours. Check to make sure the zucchini remains completely covered; if not, add more oil.
  2. Let the zucchini cure in the refrigerator for 1 week before using, then store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. To serve, remove from the jar only as much as you plan to use and let it come to room temperature. Top off the jar as necessary to keep the zucchini submerged.
Recipe Notes

You can completely skip the first step and just use plain ol' olive oil. I just wanted to experiment and try something different.

“Salvaged Tomato” Tomato Stock

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"Ugly Tomato" Tomato Stock
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
cups
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan and over medium heat until shimmering. Add the garlic and anchovy paste and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and pour liquid through a fine mesh strainer set over a large bowl. Transfer to several small air-tight container (I use canning jars) and cool to room temperature. Transfer to the refrigerator if you plan to use within a few days; otherwise, store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Recipe Notes

I call for anchovy paste only because that is what I had on hand. You can substitute a couple minced whole anchovies or leave them out all together if you prefer.

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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
people
Ingredients
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings
people
Ingredients
Instructions
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Recipe Notes

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Demo Recipe
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Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Passive Time 1 hour
Servings
people
Ingredients
Fresh Pesto
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Passive Time 1 hour
Servings
people
Ingredients
Fresh Pesto
Instructions
Fresh Pesto (you can make this in advance)
  1. We'll be using a food processor to make the pesto. Put the garlic, pine kernels and some salt in there and process briefly.
  2. Add the basil leaves (but keep some for the presentation) and blend to a green paste.
  3. While processing, gradually add the olive oil and finally add the Parmesan cheese.
Finishing the dish
  1. Bring a pot of salted water to the boil and cook your tagliatelle al dente.
  2. Use the cooking time of the pasta to sauté your bacon strips.
  3. After about 8 to 10 minutes, the pasta should be done. Drain it and put it back in the pot to mix it with the pesto.
  4. Present the dish with some fresh basil leaves on top.
Recipe Notes

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