Posts Tagged With: Olive oil

Sean’s chilli oil

This chilli oil can be fired up with finely chopped bird’s-eye chillies if you like more fire than the nutty sweetness of the standard recipe. It is also worth grabbing some disposable gloves for this recipe as prolonged contact with chillies will burn the tips of your fingers!

From the garden: chillies, garlic
Recipe source: adapted from the recipe by Sean Moran at Sean’s Panaroma in ‘Let It Simmer’
Makes: about 700ml


  • Plastic gloves
  • Heavy-based stockpot
  • Slotted spoon
  • Colander
  • Paper towel
  • Food processor
  • Glass jars

  • 250g long red chillies
  • 500ml olive oil
  • ¼ head garlic

What to do:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 160C.
  • Wash and drain the jars and place right side up on the baking tray. Slide into the oven for 10-15 minutes.
  • Wash and drain the lids and place in the small saucepan. Cover with water and set to boil for 2 or 3 minutes. Drain into a colander and then wipe out with a fresh piece of paper towel, taking care not to touch the inside of the lids.
  • Meanwhile put on some plastic gloves before slicing chillies lengthways and scraping out seeds, discarding the seeds.
  • Lightly crush and peel and the garlic cloves.
  • Place chillies in a heavy-based stockpot with the olive oil and garlic.
  • Bring to a gentle boil over a moderate flame, and fry until the chillies and garlic are deep golden and all their moisture has evaporated.
  • Lift out chillies and garlic with a slotted spoon and leave to cool.
  • Bring the jars out of the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes.
  • Process cooled chillies and garlic pulp to a coarse paste with just enough oil to lubricate the motion.
  • Stir the puree into the oil and then carefully pour into the sterilised jars.
  • Shake well before using.

Notes: What does to sterilise mean? Why can’t we touch the inside of the lids? Why do we need gloves to prepare the chillies?


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Bruschetta with smashed broad beans and garlic

I love the way that the group congregates around the bowl when shelling broad beans…  I always feel like we’re old Italian nonnas, standing there gossiping… so I will often start the conversation with the kids talking about the signorina at number 38 and whether she will marry your son Giuseppe, and if that will please Frederico at number 45 or whether Frederico himself likes the signora at number 70, and why Maria at number 20 has bought a few extra goats and a new  hair scarf…

Fresh from the garden: broad beans, rocket, garlic, thyme, marjoram
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 8 at home or 24 tastes


  • Saucepan & lid
  • Bowls – big, med, small
  • Knives – bread, small
  • Chopping board
  • Grill trays
  • Colander, citrus juicer
  • Mortar & pestle
  • Butter knife
  • Serving plates

  • A large handful of broad beans
  • Great sourdough bread
  • 50g pecorino
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • A lemon
  • Cooking salt
  • Flaked salt & black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • A small handful herbs

What to do:

  • Fill the saucepan with water & set to boil with the lid on. Heat the grill.
  • Pod the broad beans into the medium bowl and put the outer shells into the compost.
  • Cut the lemon in half and juice one half only.
  • Slice the bread loaf down the middle, and then into slices. Place on grill trays, ready for grilling.
  • Wash and dry the herbs and pick from stems, finely chop. Grate the pecorino into the small bowl. Fill the big bowl with cold water.
  • When the water is boiling, drop all the broad beans in with a teaspoon of cooking salt and put the lid back on to bring back to the boil quickly. Boil for 3 minutes with lid off.
  • Then drain the broad beans into the colander & then immediately refresh in the bowl of cold water. Drain again & wipe the big bowl dry.
  • Double-pod the broad beans into the big bowl, discarding the outer skin into the compost.
  • Pound the broad beans with the pestle in the mortar with the olive oil & a pinch of salt (you may have to do this in 2 batches) until smooth – a few beanie lumps are fine!
  • Stir in the lemon juice bit by bit, tasting – and the grated pecorino and herbs with a grind of pepper into the broad bean mixture. Taste again for seasoning.
  • Slide the bread into the oven to grill & lightly toast, turning when needed & watching to make sure it doesn’t burn.
  • When ready bring toast out from the grill. Cut the end off the garlic cloves and rub each cut-side down on the toast a few times.
  • Spread a little broad bean paste onto each slice of toast & arrange onto serving plates with a good grind of pepper.

Notes: What does ‘double-pod’ mean? Why do we do this to the broad beans? What other name are broad beans known by?

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Cannellini bean, kale and rainbow chard soup

Our kids love soup – blended and smooth or chunky and funky – and this one makes the most of our winter garden veg. At home please add some toasted buttery sourdough rubbed with garlic!

Fresh from the garden: celery, carrots, onion, garlic, potatoes, kale, rainbow chard
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 8 or 24 tastes


  • Bowls – glass, large, small
  • Kettle
  • Measures: cup, tablespoon
  • Colander, sieve
  • 2 saucepans, med and large
  • Chopping boards and knives
  • Peelers & garlic press
  • Wooden spoon
  • Ladle
  • Serving bowls




  • 150g dried cannellini beans
  • 1 teaspoon bicarb soda
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 brown onion
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1.5 litres boiling water & 1.5 tablespoons bouillon (or 1.5 litres vegetable stock)
  • 2 Desiree or other red potatoes
  • One large bunch kale
  • A couple of stalks of rainbow chard
  • Flaked salt and black pepper

What to do:

  • The night before, soak the cannellini beans in plenty of cold water with a teaspoon of bicarb.
  • At the beginning of the lesson, drain and rinse the beans. Add them to the smaller saucepan with plenty of water to cover and the bay leaves. Peel 2 of the garlic cloves and add them whole to the pan. Heat on high to boil and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring every now and then.
  • Fill the kettle and set it to boil.
  • Wash and shake the celery dry and chop into small pieces. Wash and peel the carrots and chop into small pieces.
  • Wash and chop the potatoes into 2cm cubes, leaving the skin on.
  • Peel and finely dice the onion. Peel and squeeze the remaining 3 cloves of garlic through the press.
  • Wash the kale and chard in several changes of water, and then shake dry. Trim the stalks from the kale and discard. Trim the stalks from the chard and chop into 5mm pieces, keeping separate. Roll up the kale and chard leaves and slice or tear into 1cm strips.
  • In the larger saucepan over medium heat, heat the olive oil until shimmering.
  • Add the celery, carrots, and onion, and cook, until the onions are softened, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for another minute or so, and then add the potatoes and stir to coat.
  • Using caution, measure the litre of boiling water into the jug and stir the bouillon in. Add to the vegetables and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  • Strain the beans & garlic and add to the vegetables with the kale and chard stalks and simmer for another 10 minutes, then add the chopped chard and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Check for correct seasoning, then ladle out into serving bowls.
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Our Bondi olives

These olives were picked from our own trees here at Bondi at the end of February and beginning of March this year. They spent about 2 months brining, both black and green, separated by harvest date & slit on two sides – the first week with a daily change of 1/3 of a cup of salt to a litre of water & then a weekly change of the same… In 2013 we harvested about 4.5kg of black and green combined & they have been brining for 2 months. This recipe is for preserving some olives & eating the rest – the jars of olives are even better after a week & will last undisturbed in the cupboard for at least 12 months; once opened will last for about a month in the fridge.

Our olives!

Fresh from the garden: olives, rosemary, thyme, sage
Recipe source: Melissa
Makes: 3 jars plus a bowl to eat!


  • Slotted spoon
  • Paper towel
  • 3 small jars with metal lids
  • Knife – small
  • Baking tray
  • Saucepan
  • Oven mitts
  • Small ladle
  • 4 little bowls to serve with separate bowls for pits

  • 500g black & green olives in brine
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of sage
  • A small handful of thyme sprigs
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 orange
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 or 3 cups extra-virgin olive oil

What to do:

  • Preheat oven to 160°C.
  • Thoroughly wash jars and lids in hot soapy water, rinse well and leave upside down to drain.
  • When the oven is ready, place jars right-side up on the baking tray and slip into the oven for 5-10 minutes until totally dry. Wipe the lids with paper towel to make sure perfectly dry.
  • Meanwhile scoop olives out of the tub and into the colander with the slotted spoon and rinse in cold water, checking each olive and discarding any that are mushy. Pat dry with paper towel.
  • Wash and thoroughly dry all the herbs and strip the leaves from their stalks.
  • Peel the garlic cloves and gently crush each clove with the back of a knife to break.
  • Carefully slice 1 cm-wide strips of zest from the orange, trying to take just the peel and none of the white pith.
  • Pour the olive oil into the saucepan and add the olives, herbs, chilli, bay leaves, fennel seeds, garlic and orange strips. Heat over medium-low heat until warm & smelling lovely.
  • Using oven mitts slide the tray of jars out of the oven. Using the ladle, carefully fill each jar with a good combination of olives, herbs, spices, orange peel, and garlic. Fill right to the top with olive oil and then seal each with its lid.
  • Spoon the remainder into the four little bowls and place each on a plate with a spare to catch the pits.

Notes: Why don’t we use the olives straight from the trees? Why are they green & black? What does ‘marinate’ mean? Why do we heat up the olive oil? What other ingredients could you use?

Olives, jarred

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Crispy rosemary flatbread

Smittenkitchen says: Nothing could be easier than making this cracker, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t tell people you slaved all day over it because they’re going to be impressed, and I see no reason not to milk it. I think you could easily swap the rosemary for other herbs, such as thyme or tarragon, or punch it up with black pepper or other spices, but personally, I like it just the way it is here.

Crispy crispy!

Fresh from the garden: rosemary
Recipe source: adapted by from a recipe in Gourmet magazine
Serves: 8 or about 30 tastes


  • 3 heavy, large baking sheets
  • Paper towel
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Measures: cup, ½ cup, ¼ cup, tablespoon, ½ teaspoon
  • Baking paper
  • Large bowl
  • Rolling pins
  • Pastry brushes
  • Wire racks
  • Serving plates

  • 3½ cups unbleached plain flour
  • 4 large sprigs rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cooking salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup olive oil plus more for brushing
  • Flaky sea salt

What to do:

  • Preheat oven to 230°C with 3 heavy baking sheets inside.
  • Wash, dry and chop 1 sprig of rosemary.
  • Stir together flour, 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Make a well in centre, then add water and oil and gradually stir into flour with a wooden spoon until a dough forms. Knead dough gently on a work surface 4 or 5 times.
  • Divide dough into 3 pieces and roll out each piece separately on sheets of baking paper into shapes large enough to fit  each baking tray (shape can be rustic; dough should be thin).
  • Lightly brush the tops with additional oil and then strip the remaining rosemary, scattering small clusters of leaves on top, pressing in slightly. Sprinkle with flaked salt.
  • Slide rounds (still on baking paper) onto the preheated baking sheets and bake until pale golden and browned in spots, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Transfer flatbread (discard baking paper) to racks to cool.
  • Break into pieces and serve.
  • Flatbread can be made 2 days ahead and cooled completely, then kept in an airtight container at room temperature. 

Notes: Why is this called flatbread? Why is this unleavened bread? What is kneading?

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Marinated feta

This recipe is super-easy – it’s lovely to spread on bruschetta, or to add to a frittate recipe, or delicious on it’s own with some roasted chicken & salad… and will also last in the fridge for a week or so, in a jar just covered with a thin film of olive oil.

Excuse me do you have the thyme please?

Fresh from the garden: thyme, lemon thyme, garlic, lemon
Recipe source: Melissa


  • Chopping board & knife
  • Bowls – large, med, small
  • Paper towel
  • Peeler
  • Salad spinner
  • Measuring jug
  • Serving bowls
  • Small jar & lid if needed

  • 200g Danish feta
  • A lemon
  • A small handful thyme (or lemon thyme) sprigs
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 100ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • Black pepper

What to do:

  • Unwrap the feta & cut into 1cm cubes.
  • Wash and wipe the lemon dry. Using a peeler or a small sharp knife, carefully cut thin strips of yellow flesh from the lemon and add to the feta.
  • Wash the thyme, spin it dry and then strip the leaves from the stalks. Add the leaves to the feta,
  • Peel and chop the garlic into thin slivers and add those to the feta, with a grind or two of the black pepper.
  • Measure the olive oil and then pour it over the feta. Carefully fold the ingredients together without mashing the cheese, then spoon into serving bowls. Leave for a few minutes for the flavours to marry – or if using later, pop in to a clean and dry jar and cover with the lid.
  • Note: the olive oil may solidify and go cloudy if kept in the fridge, so let the jar come to room temperature for 30 minutes or so before you need it!

Notes: What animals’ milk makes feta cheese? What’s the difference between Danish & Greek styles of feta?

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Broad bean puree

Alice says, ‘As the season progresses, the beans continue to mature, and they become larger and starchier. At this point they can be popped out of their pods, skinned and cooked into a luscious, bright green puree that I adore slathering on crisp croutons or serving alongside roasted meats.’

Fresh from the garden: broad beans, garlic, rosemary
Recipe source: Alice Waters, The Art of Simple Food
Serves: 8 or 28 tastes


  • Medium heavy-bottomed saucepan
  • Colander
  • Scales
  • Bowls – 3 big, medium
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Measures – jug
  • Paper towel
  • Food mill
  • Spoon
  • Serving bowls

  • 1.8kg broad beans in shell
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 branch rosemary
  • Flaked salt
  • 100ml water
  • 50ml extra-virgin olive oil

 What to do:

  • Bring a pot of water to the boil as you shell the broad beans.
  • Blanch quickly in the boiling water and then drain & cool in a bowl of cold water for a minute. Drain and pop the beans out of their skins. Wipe the saucepan clean.
  • Peel and slice the garlic cloves. Wash and wipe dry the rosemary.
  • Heat 100ml olive oil in the dry saucepan, then add the broad beans, garlic, the branch of rosemary, a pinch of salt and 100ml water, and cook until the beans are very tender, stirring occasionally, and adding more water if necessary.
  • The beans are done when they can be crushed easily with the back of a spoon, about 15 minutes. Mash with a spoon or pass them through a food mill.
  • Stir in the 50ml extra-virgin olive oil. Taste and season with salt as needed.
  • Serve right away or at room temperature.

Notes: What is another name for broad beans? What would be good to serve with the puree?

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Rocket linguine with broad beans, lemon and marjoram

Our Kitchen Garden students love making pasta – and this recipe sings of spring! It includes the dough mixture as well as instructions on how to use a pasta machine.

Fresh from the garden: eggs, rocket, broad beans, lemon, marjoram
Recipe source: Melissa


  • Salad spinner
  • Pasta machine
  • Scales, garlic press
  • Measures – teaspoon
  • Food processor
  • Plastic wrap
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Pastry brush, grater
  • Large stock pot & saucepan
  • Tongs, large bowls
  • Serving bowls

  • 500g plain ‘00’ flour
  • 5 free-range eggs
  • Salt
  • 2 handfuls of rocket
  • 500g broad beans in pod
  • A handful of marjoram sprigs
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • A lemon
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Flaked salt & black pepper
  • 50g parmesan

What to do:

To make the pasta:

  • Wash a handful of rocket thoroughly and spin dry. Discard any tough stalks and chop roughly.
  • Weigh the flour, then combine it with 1½ teaspoons of salt in the bowl of the food processor. With the motor running, add the eggs and the chopped rocket. Process for a few minutes until the dough clings together and feels quite springy.
  • Tip the dough onto a clean, dry workbench. Knead the dough for a few minutes, then wrap it in plastic film and let it rest for 1 hour at room temperature.


  • Fill the large stockpot and the saucepan with water and set to boil on high with the lids on.
  • Fix the pasta machine to a suitable bench or table – if the surface is not thick enough you may need to place a thick book under the machine. Screw the clamp very tightly.
  • Clear a large space on the workbench alongside the pasta machine. All surfaces must be clean and dry. Press or roll the dough into a rectangle about 8 cm wide.
  • Set the rollers on the pasta machine to the widest setting and pass the dough through. The dough will probably look quite ragged at this stage. Fold it in 3, turn it 90 degrees and roll it through again. Go to the next-thickest setting and pass the dough through 3-4 times.
  • Continue in this manner (changing the settings and passing the dough through) until the dough has passed through the second thinnest setting. Don’t use the very thinnest setting, as the dough gets too fine and is hard to manage. If the dough gets too long to handle comfortably, cut it into 2-3 pieces using the large knife, and roll each piece separately.
  • Lay the pasta strips on a lightly floured surface & dust with a little more flour. Attach the pasta cutter to the machine and pass through the largest rollers, draping it in your hands to catch.
  • Carefully separate each strip and hang over a pole to dry.
  • Clean the pasta machine by brushing it with a dry, wide pastry brush & putting back in its box.  

To finish the dish:

  • Check that the stockpot & saucepan have been filled with water and are set on high to boil.
  • Pod the broad beans, discarding the outer shell into the compost and add beans to the boiling water. Fill a large bowl with cold water and have ready.
  • Boil the broad beans for 3 minutes, drain and then immediately refresh in the bowl of cold water. Drain again and double-pod by slipping the outer shell off into the compost. Put the beans into the big bowl.
  • Wash and dry the lemon and zest it. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze its juice into the beans.
  • Peel the garlic cloves and squeeze them into the bowl too.
  • Measure the parmesan and grate what you need. Wash and spin dry the marjoram and strip leaves into the garlicky broad beans.
  • Wash and spin the remaining rocket dry and add that to the bowl.
  • Measure 1/3 cup of olive oil into the bowl and sprinkle on a few pinches of flaked salt and a good grind of pepper and toss to incorporate.
  • When the stockpot has started a fast boil, gather your drying pasta on a large baking tray. Add  a tablespoon of cooking salt and then the pasta to the pot, stir once and quickly put the lid back on.
  • As soon as the pot begins to boil again, take the lid off. The pasta should only take 2 minutes or so to cook from boiling. Taste to check – it’s important that the pasta remains al dente and is not overcooked!
  • Using tongs, carefully pull the pasta (and some of its cooking liquid) out and into the big lemony rocket bowl and toss to thoroughly incorporate.
  • Divide into serving bowls, sprinkle the parmesan on and eat immediately!

Notes: Never wash the pasta machine – it will rust! Just brush down with a strong brush to remove the leftover dough.

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Pita bread

If you’ve never made bread from scratch, pita is the perfect place to start. If you have made bread before, you’ll know how delicious these can be! They are great served with hummus for dipping, or our falafel with herby yoghurt… this recipe makes about 20 small pita breads.


  • Measuring jug
  • Bowl – 2 small
  • Bowl – large mixing
  • Teaspoon
  • Tablespoon
  • Glad wrap
  • Rolling pin
  • Fork
  • 6  tea towels
  • Medium frying pan
  • Large knife
  • 4 serving plates

  • 7g dried yeast
  • 20g sugar
  • 375ml warm water
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 500g plain unbleached flour, plus extra
  • 100g fine semolina
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra

What to do:

  • Dissolve the yeast and sugar in 125ml warm water, cover and set aside for 15 minutes until frothy. Dissolve salt in remaining 250ml warm water.
  • Place flour and semolina in a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Add yeast mixture, 1 tablespoon olive oil and salt water. Knead with hands for 10 minutes in the bowl. Shape into a ball in the bowl, cover with glad wrap and place in a warm area to rise. Wait about one hour until dough has doubled in volume.
  • Punch down dough and knead on a floured surface for one minute. Divide dough into pieces slightly larger than an egg and roll quickly into little balls. Leave to rest under a damp tea towel for 5 minutes, then roll out on a floured surface to a thickness of about 6mm. Prick bread with a fork in several places.
  • Preheat a frying pan, add a dash of olive oil and cook bread over high heat for a couple of minutes each side until lightly browned. Repeat with remaining breads, carefully wiping out the frying pan if smoking and adding oil for every second one if necessary.
  • Stack breads on a clean tea towel, placing clean tea towels between each second one to absorb the moisture, and allow to cool.
  • Slice into quarters or strips and divide onto the plates.

Notes: Where does pita bread originate? Where are other flat breads used? What other sort of dishes do they go with? What does dissolve mean? What does absorb mean?

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Rose Elliott’s warm beetroot and quinoa tabbouleh

Rose Elliott is a British vegetarian cookery writer. She first became a vegetarian at the age of three and has since written 55 books on vegetarian cookery.

 Fresh from the garden: lemon, beetroot, onions, parsley



  • Scales
  • Sieve
  • Saucepans & lids – med, large
  • Chopping board & knife
  • Peelers
  • Bowls – 2 large
  • Grater
  • Salad spinner
  • Citrus juicer
  • Measures – tablespoon
  • Serving bowls

  • 125g quinoa
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large red onions
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • ½ a lemon
  • 2 small raw beetroot & any small leaves
  • A handful flat-leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

What to do:

  • Put the quinoa in a sieve and rinse thoroughly under the cold tap, then put into a saucepan with 300ml water and bring to the boil. Cover and leave to cook slowly for 18 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to stand, still lidded, for 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile peel, halve and finely slice the onions. Warm the olive oil in a roomy saucepan, put in the onions, stir to coat with the oil, then cover and leave to cook gently for 10 minutes, or until very tender.
  • Wash, peel and chop off the beetroot leaves. Carefully grate the beetroot to yield about 200g. Wash and spin-dry the small beetroot leaves & parsley and chop the leaves coarsely. Juice the half lemon.
  • Stir the balsamic vinegar into the onion, let it bubble, then remove from the heat and add the quinoa, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, beetroot, parsley and plenty of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

 Notes: What is quinoa? Are beetroot leaves edible? What is balsamic vinegar? Where does the name tabbouleh come from?


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