The past few weeks have been challenging with little progress on the new kitchen. So when the opportunity came up to pick succulent organic olives, 40 minutes from my home city Adelaide and make our own cold pressed olive oil, I grabbed it! I hadn’t realised the physical hard work I had committed to, however lots of fresh air and the result were wonderful! Rich, velvety delicious Olive Oil like no other I have enjoyed before!
The end result: rich, golden and velvety, ready to lavishly drizzle over my salads, creamy beans, vegetables in fact anything my heart (tummy) desires!
Growing up in an Italian family everything was cooked in virgin olive oil, in fact I can’t recall any other type of oil ever being used. I now no longer use it for cooking as it is damaged by heat and looses it’s healing qualities. It is best to cook with water (ghee or some other oil that is unchanged by heat) and add the olive oil when ready to serve. Even the traditional Italian pasta sauce is unbelievably delicious cooked this way.
An Impromptu Recipe: Healthy Traditional Pasta “Sugo” (Sauce)
Cook 2 cloves chopped garlic and 1 finely chopped onion in a fry pan in a little water(1-2 cups) until the onion is softened.
Add 2-3 cups peeled tomatoes and herbs,(basil and parsley in summer or bay leaves in winter) and cook until the tomatoes have become a deep red colour and the water has been reduced to nil.
Then take the sauce (sugo) off the heat when the pasta is cooked, and add a generous amount of organic cold pressed olive oil. Stir this well into the sauce, add to your favourite pasta/noodles (I like to use the buckwheat pasta) and perhaps a few more fresh basil leaves (when in season).
Mix together well, serve and enjoy! It’s not totally alkaline however it’s the Italian’s answer to a more healthful plate of pasta when only a tomato” sugo” will do!
CREAMY WHITE BEANS with GARDEN VEGETABLES : A Recipe
1-2 cups of small white beans (Haricot or Great Northern)
10 cloves of fat garlic (peeled)
1 red onion diced (or cut into quarters)
2 sprigs of thyme
2-3 bay leaves
Best quality water
LATER: 2-3 cups spinach leaves (torn into pieces)
1 cup kale (torn into pieces)
handful of small broccoli heads
1 cup cauliflower heads (keep these small also)
TO TASTE : Celtic sea salt
Organic cold pressed olive oil
The night before cooking wash the beans 3 times, cover well with water and let stand.
The next morning drain the water. Add fresh water enough to cover the beans by about 1 index finger (2-3 inches or 9-10 mm). Add the garlic cloves, onion, thyme and bay leaves and cook until the beans are creamy and tender ( about 1 hour and a half sometimes a little more time is needed).
The beans when cooked are ready to be salted. Never salt beans durning the cooking process as they could harden. In fact the dish could be eaten now just as is with some chopped parsley and lashings of the olive oil.
Or another way I love them is, drain them from the stock (this can be used as a soup or rice dish base so don”t throw it) add a finely chopped red onion, 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil and some umeboshi or apple cider vinegar and enjoy with a High nutrient dense green salad.
Now back to the original recipe: To the soupy beans add the vegetables and cook until tender. Serve the portions into bowls and then and only then (always have the olive oil uncooked) add your required amount of the golden oil!
Enjoy! I did and it’s a wonderfully soothing dish both winter and Summer!
The Rose: This bowl of perfect roses I offer to the Goddess in us all.
“Fill your bowl with roses: the bowl, too, have of crystal.
Sit at the western window. Take the sun
Between your hands like a ball of flaming crystal,
Poise it to let it fall, but hold it still,
And meditate on the beauty of your existence;
The beauty of this, that you exist at all.”
A verse taken from Chiarascuro by Conrad Aiken