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Zucchini with Red Onions & Basil

2 medium red onions, cut in half and thinly sliced
2 ½ lbs firm zucchini, washed, dried and cut into ½ ” rounds
3-tbsp Basil Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 basil leaves
1 chicken bouillon cube
Sauté the onion 1-2 min in olive oil in a non-stick pan then add zucchini slices, and sauté until they are soft and lightly colored (about 10-15 minutes)
Crumble the bouillon cube on top of the mixture, stir it in, cover and cook for about 5 more minutes until all is lightly browned
Tear the basil leaves into small pieces and sprinkle them into the mixture, continuing to cook for about 2 more minutes
Add a bit of salt to taste
This lovely dish can be served hot or at room temperature. It can also be refrigerated for a day and then served at room temperature the next day

Vanilla Balsamic Shrimp over Couscous

1/2 cup bold extra virgin olive oil (Cerasuola, Leccino, Mission, Nevadillo Blanco, Picual)
3 Tbsp. Vanilla Balsamic Vinegar
Kosher salt
8 extra-large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
Pinch of saffron threads
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil, plus a few whole leaves for garnish (optional)v1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 cup Toasted Pasta Couscous (Israeli style)
Freshly ground pepper
In a medium bowl, combine vanilla balsamic vinegar with a pinch of salt. Slowly whisk in 1/3 cup of olive oil. Place shrimp in another bowl, and pour half of balsamic dressing on top. Refrigerate shrimp for 30 minutes.
Place chicken broth and saffron a small saucepan with. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook about 3 minutes. Add basil, butter, couscous, ½ -teaspoon salt and ¼ -teaspoon pepper. Bring mixture back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer; cover and cook until couscous is tender and most of broth is absorbed, 8 to 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons vanilla olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add shrimp and ½ -teaspoon salt. Sauté on one side for 3 minutes, then sauté other side until crisp and opaque, 3 minutes more.
Place couscous on 2 plates; garnish with basil leaves (if using). Arrange shrimp on top, add pepper to taste, and drizzle with remaining Vanilla Balsamic Vinaigrette. Serve immediately.

Vanilla Balsamic Chicken

½ -cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
½ -cup Vanilla Balsamic Vinegar
¼ -cup finely chopped shallots
¼ -tsp grated orange rind
¼ -cup fresh orange juice
¾ -tsp sea salt, divided
16 skinless, boneless chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
½ -tsp freshly ground black pepper
Cooking spray
~Preheat oven to 450-degrees
~Combine first 5 ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil
~Reduce heat, and simmer until reduced to ½ -cup (about 20 minutes)
~Stir in ¼ -tsp salt
~Arrange chicken in a single layer in the bottom of a roasting pan coated with cooking spray
~Sprinkle chicken evenly with remaining ½ -tsp salt and pepper
~Bake at 450-degrees for 10 minutes
~Brush half of broth mixture over chicken and bake 5 minutes
~Brush remaining broth mixture over chicken and bake 15 minutes or until a thermometer registers 180-degrees

Tuna Pasta

½ c Picholine or Ultra Picual Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Sicilian Lemon Balsamic Vinegar
8 chopped Kalamata olives
pinch of red pepper flakes
1 can tuna in water or olive oil - drain well and separate into chunks
1# cooked pasta of your choice
Mix all ingredients. Toss over hot pasta and serve with Parmesan cheese and a big salad.

Thyme and Shallot Focaccia with Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 ½-cups warm water
3-tbsp bold Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus additional 1/4 cup for drizzling) (Cerasuola, Leccino, Mission, Nevadillo Blanco, Picual)
1 ¼-tsp sea salt
3 ½-cups unbleached, all purpose flour
1-tbsp instant yeast
¼-cup thinly sliced shallots
2-tsp fresh thyme, chopped
1-tsp coarse sea salt for sprinkling on top (optional)
~Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan, and drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil in the bottom
~Combine all of the ingredients, and beat at high speed with an electric mixer for 60 seconds
~Scoop the sticky batter into the prepared pan, cover the pan and let it rise at room temperature for 60 minutes, until it become puffy
~While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 375°F
~Gently poke the dough all over with your index finger
~Distribute sliced shallots and chopped thyme evenly over the surface of the dough
~Drizzle dough with ¼-cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil and sprinkle with sea salt, if desired
~Bake the bread till it's golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes
~Remove it from the oven, wait 5 minutes, then turn it out of the pan onto a rack
~Serve warm or at room temperature

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