Greek Easter is here! It is one of our favourite holidays of the year. Following 40 days of Lent, tomorrow is Easter Sunday, and we are very much looking forward to sitting around the festive table with friends and family.

Every year, we paint red eggs, bake the traditional tsoureki, have lamb and salads with spring greens and, of course, tzatziki! Remember our pink tzatziki from last year? This week we’re making the classic version for you.

As you surely know, this dip can be enjoyed all year round. It is quite refreshing and goes very well with the Easter lamb. But also it makes for a wonderful addition to vegetarian dishes, sandwiches and salads.

So join us, for a celebration of Greek Easter by making the classic tzatziki recipe tomorrow! And a couple of tips: Make sure to use thick Greek yogurt and to squeeze your cucumber, so that you end up with a thick, creamy tzatziki.

500g Greek yogurt
1 large cucumber
1 small bunch of dill
1 clove of garlic
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
salt, to taste
dill, olive oil (to serve)

Grate the cucumber. Squeeze it to remove excess liquid. Finely chop the dill. Mince the garlic with salt. Mix everything together and add the vinegar. Serve with more dill and olive oil.

 

Happy Greek Easter everyone!!

 


Next week is the final week of Lent for us Greeks. As we are all looking forward to the Greek Easter next week, this week, traditionally, we prepare simple recipes that do not contain any animal produce.

But simple doesn’t mean not tasty. And it also doesn’t mean that these recipes can’t be enjoyed throughout the year. Indeed, in the Greek food culture, many of these recipes have become part of the daily diets of people. To learn more about the way us Greeks approach Vegan foods, join our upcoming Cooking Workshop! Our talented Lida is going to be talking about all these foods and has prepared a delicious menu for us. So come along, we have very few spaces left!

This week we’ve prepared something that you can enjoy as a dip or starter -a wonderful addition to your Easter table! But, between you and me, this also makes for a wonderful light dinner, with the addition of some crusty bread. It is spring after all, a cold dinner is sometimes appropriate.

Serves 6 as a starter

150g small white beans
5 sun-dried tomatoes (approx. 25g)
100g roasted red peppers
3 tbsp olive oil
zest of 1 lemon
1 tbsp chilli vinegar
chilli flakes, lemon wedges, chilli vinegar, olive oil (to serve)

The night before, soak your beans in plenty of water. The morning after, boil them until tender. Set aside and let cool, reserving ¼ cup of the cooking liquid.
In a food processor, place the beans, sun-dried tomatoes, red peppers, olive oil, lemon zest and chilli vinegar. Blend until a smooth paste forms. If you prefer, add some of the cooking liquid, to make the paste smoother.

Serve with chilli flakes, lemon wedges, and more vinegar and olive oil. And of course, pita bread or crusty bread!

Happy Easter everyone!


This week is one of our favourites of the year! Why, you ask. This week we are receiving our new olive oil! We are very excited and soon you will get the chance to stock up on your favourite ones.

We usually use our 22 olive oil in our recipes. This mid harvest olive oil is made from semi ripe olives. It has a mellow quality and a silky smooth texture that adds depth and flavour to all of our culinary preparations.

But for this week’s recipe, we’ve prepared a dressing using our lemongrass and tarragon olive oil.

This awarded olive oil is made from semi ripe olives crushed with fresh lemongrass and tarragon. We’ve used it in the past in this wonderful summer salad. As we received the new batch, an idea came to mind. This olive oil pairs perfectly with our sweet balsamic chilli vinegar. Our organic vinegar from the Agioritiko red grape variety has a gentle kick from chilli peppers that is the ultimate pair for the very fresh flavour and intense aromas of our lemongrass and tarragon oil.

You can use this dressing in your salads, fish, prawns or green vegetables. We had frozen some Brussels sprouts a few months back and, on a this cold spring week, we’ve decided to combine a winter vegetable with a vibrant dressing. Hint: it’s great with asparagus that are now in season!

Serves 2 side salads

1 fat clove of garlic
1tbsp sweet balsamic chilli vinegar
1 pinch of dried chillies
1tsp wild flower honey
3 tbsp lemongrass and tarragon olive oil
salt and pepper (to taste)

Mince the garlic using salt. In a bowl, whisk the garlic, vinegar, chillies, honey until well mixed. Slowly add the olive oil, whisking constantly until emulsified.

Toss the dressing in warm vegetables, or poor over your favourite dish.

Happy new olive oil season everyone!


This is a recipe unlike any others. What do we mean? Well, this is a recipe that you can make at home, when your fridge is empty. You know, those evenings when you are too tired or too lazy to go shopping, or those days that you have forgotten to do so -it has happened to us as well!

The secret here is a nicely stocked cupboard and a bit of imagination. Have a look at our bundles, get yourselves some essential cupboard items and we’ve got you sorted.

So this week, we are making lentils. We are not smoking them, but we are using two of our ingredients that will offer some smokey-ness. Smoked salt and roasted red peppers! This recipe will be amazing with some freshly squeezed lemon juice and zest, but as this is a recipe to make with an empty fridge, we are using our lemon olives instead! And of course, our chilli vinegar for some spice and kick.

Freshly cut herbs and / or caramelised onions would also work, you know, just in case you do decide to go shopping! But the recipe words perfectly as is, using just your cupboard staples.

Serves two

150g lentils
½ tbsp smoked salt, plus more to serve
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tbsp chilli vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil
150g roasted red peppers
½ pack kalamata olives with lemon and herbs
Fresh parsley or other herbs or caramelised onions (optional)

In a large pot with water, add the smoked salt and lentils. Boil until the lentils tender. Drain and place in a large bowl.

In the meantime, cut your peppers in fine strips.

Place the peppers in the bowl with the lentils. Add the olives, dried oregano, olive oil and vinegar. Toss everything together and add more salt if needed. Add herbs and caramelised onions (if using). Serve hot or at room temperature.


It was Valentine’s day yesterday and we hope you had a wonderful time with your loved ones! Did you make our Valentine’s Orzo with Black Truffle Sauce? If not, go ahead, it’s simple, delicious and between us, it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s day to enjoy something like this!

This week we have a new recipe using one of our products of the month: saffron! Remember our Saffron and Orange Chickpeas from a few weeks ago? If you haven’t used this unique ingredient before, this week’s recipe is ideal.

And I must say, do have a look at our beautiful hamper for the adventurous cook. It includes saffron amongst other intriguing ingredients that guarantee to inspire your daily cooking! Or check our gift bag with saffron and other treats!

This recipe is adapted from the Greek magazine Gastronomos, one of our favourite ones. It is on the sour side, so if you prefer your dressings sweeter don’t hesitate to add a bit of honey or grape molasses. Cooking after all is all about adapting recipes to your own unique preferences!

Serves 2

400g carrots
1 tbsp lemon
1 tbsp orange juice
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 generous pinches of saffron in 1 tbsp of warm water
1 clove of garlic minced
5 tbsp olive oil
Salt

Wash, peel and cut your carrots in bite-sized pieces. Place them in a large pot with boiling, salted water and boil until tender. Remove from the pot and drain. You can skip this step if you prefer and use the carrots raw.

In the meantime, make your dressing.
In a bowl whisk together the lemon juice, orange juice, red wine vinegar, saffron in water and garlic. Slowly add the olive oil, until the mixture is emulsified. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Toss warm (or raw!) carrots and dressing together and serve immediately.


This week we are trying out something a little bit different. January days can sometimes feel a bit dull, but not for us here at Oliveology. On the contrary, they often inspire us to think outside the box, add more colours and flavours to our weekly cooking routine. Cooking after all should be more about creativity and less about routine, right?

So what are we making? To begin with, we selected two of our favourite winter vegetables, beetroot and sweet potato. Remember our beetroot dip or our lentil and sweet potato vegan soup? This dish is vegetarian too, you guessed it right.

But these are no ordinary roasted vegetables. Inspired by the Greek cooking magazine Gastronomos, we are making them sweet and a little bit sour. We will use honey to bring out the vegetables’ natural sweetness, and balsamic vinegar to add a very welcome acidic note. And the ingredients that bring everything together: oranges and grapefruits!

Oh, and did we mention that apart from spending a bit of time preparing your vegetables, this recipe needs nothing more? That’s what we call an easy January dinner!

For 4 people (plus leftovers):

700g sweet potatoes
700g beetroot
1 large red onion
1 large grapefruit, zest and juice
1 large orange, zest and juice

100g wild flower honey
50ml aged balsamic vinegar
100ml olive oil
salt

Preheat the oven at 180C.

Peel the sweet potato and scrub the beetroot. Cut in small bite sized pieces (vegetables will cook faster this way). Peel and finely slice the onion.

Place your vegetables in a large baking tray. Add the citrus juices and zest.

In a small saucepan add the honey and warm it up to make it more runny. Remove from the hear and add the vinegar and olive oil. Pour over the vegetables.

Season well with salt and toss everything together so that the vegetables are coated with the honey-vinegar mixture and citrus juices.

Bake for an hour or until the vegetables are soft, sticky and slightly caramelised.


This week we’ve got something different for you. With December in full swing, the weather is now properly cold. During those cold winter days, we always think of citrus fruit. Somehow all their vitamins make us feel stronger.

So when thinking of this week’s recipe, we couldn’t but use citrus. And what a better way to incorporate all these healthy juices into your daily food routine, than with a delicious citrus dressing! But healthy doesn’t mean not festive. You can use this dressing for your seasonal greens, roasted squash and even in a simple bulgur wheat salad! Can you think of anything better for your Christmas table?

In this recipe, we have balanced the acidity and bitterness of the citrus with a bit of honey and used our favourite red wine vinegar to pump up the flavours. After all, winter requires intense flavours, right?

Makes enough for a side salad of 4

1 lime, zest and juice separately
2 grapefruit, zest and juice separately
1 orange, zest and juice separately
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tsp orange blossom honey
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
5 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper (to taste)

Combine all citrus juice together. Measure 5 tbsp of juice and set aside. Drink the rest, it’s good for you. In a bowl whisk together the zest, juice, the garlic, honey and vinegar. Slowly add the olive oil and whisk until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Taste and if you feel it needs more sweetness, add a bit more honey.


Spring vegetables excite us, you must know this by now. And it is always a challenge to find new things to do with all these greens that are popping up in the market.

This week we decided to use one of our favourite staples, lentils. We usually associate lentils with comforting winter soups, or nutritious salads. But how about something…lighter? This dish is filled with all sorts of green things. The way we think about food is reflected on this lentil salad.

So follow us, take a walk around the market, and put in your basket all the greens that inspire you. We got a selection of broad beans, peas, sugar snap peas, zucchini, avocado and leeks. And to make it even more exciting, we’ve added crushed nuts on top of the salad. You could also top it up a notch by adding some feta cheese or galomyzithra cheese, but we decided to keep this one vegan.

For 2 people you will need:

1 avocado
150g lentils
100g various spring vegetables (peas, broad beans, sugar snap peas)
1 zucchini
1 leek
4tbsp olive oil
25g mixed nuts (walnuts, almonds)
1-2tbsp red wine vinegar
salt

Boil the lentils in salted water for around 20min until cooked but not mushy. Drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside.

Finely chop the leek. Place the leek in a frying pan, over medium low heat with the olive oil. Cook until soft but not caramelised.

In the meantime, cut the zucchini and avocado in small cubes. Rinse your spring vegetables under cold water and drain.

Add the zucchini to your frying pan with the leek and cook for 4-5min until tender. Add your spring vegetables and cook for 2 more minutes.

Place everything together with the lentils and avocado in a large bowl. Stir and season with salt. Serve with the crushed nuts and by drizzling vinegar on every plate.


January is in full swing, with gloomy wet weather (which however the writer of this blog post happens to adore). January is the month when we all decide we will take better care of ourselves. With the feasting of the holidays now way past us, we make promises to eat healthier, better. What healthier and better means may differ for each of us. For us at Oliveolology it is eating fresh vegetables, food made with care, good olive oil.

But you know, you have to have exciting flavours too. So this week we are playing with one very special ingredient. Kalamata olives with orange and herbs. These olives are marinated in orange juice, zest and wild aromatic herbs from our farm. Try to imagine the meatiness of the kalamata olives together with the citrusy orange. Absolutely delicious.

And what these olives pair perfectly with? Beetroot! You know we love this vegetable and there is something very satisfying to roasted beetroot. Remember our beetroot dip? How about last year’s lentil and beetroot salad?

To bring everything together we’ve selected kale and our organic goat’s cheese.

Serves two as side or one as main

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 sweet red wine vinegar
1 grape molasses
1 bowl/plate/bunch/bag of kale leaves
2 large beetroot
½ tub orange olives
¼-1/2 pack goats’ cheese
pinch of salt

Preheat your oven to 200C. Scrub your beetroot under running water. Wrap each one in tinfoil and place them in a baking tray. Roast them until cooked through, around an hour.
In the meantime, wash and tear the kale leaves into bite-sized pieces and place in a large bowl. Whisk together the olive oil, sweet vinegar and grape molasses, salt.
Once cooked, remove the beetroot from the oven. As soon as they are cool enough to handle, unwrap them and using your fingers peel the skin off. You can of course leave the skin on. Slice the beetroot or cut them in wedges. Gently toss together beetroot, kale, orange olives, dressing. Lay on a plate or bowl (we used a chopping board). Crumble the cheese on top.


Thanksgiving is the time in November when people from across the pond gather together, give thanks and share food. Today, we do not give thanks for the harvest we’ve had, like people used to do. Nonetheless, it is a good opportunity to reflect on what we are thankful for.

As autumn ends, we are thankful for the comforting food that nourishes us. For the pure ingredients that transform into love. So this week, away from the extravagant thanksgiving dishes, we chose to prepare something simple for you.

A warm, hearty vegetarian lentil salad. It is inspired by this season’s “harvest”, using, what else, beetroot. Our sweet vinegar, fruity and crisp adds sharpness. Our salty, mature feta cheese balances the sweetness of the beetroot. Herbs add freshness and shine.

It is luscious and really easy to make.

Lentil and Beetroot salad with Feta Cheese

Serves two

200g beetroot, stalks and leaves trimmed (save them for soups or salads)
150g lentils
50g feta cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped plus more for garnish 4g

For the dressing:
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp sweet vinegar
salt to taste

Place the beetroot in a roasting tray, drizzle some olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast at 200°C, covered, for around 45 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork. Alternatively, boil with plenty of water, until tender when pierced with a fork. When they are still warm, peel them and cut into cubes.

Place the lentils in a small cooking pot with lots of water and boil until tender. Drain and rinse under cold water. 

To make the simple dressing, whisk together the olive oil and sweet vinegar with a pinch of salt and the chopped mint.

Mix together the lentils, beetroot, feta cheese and dressing. Garnish with more mint if you want. Say goodbye to autumn and welcome the winter that’s coming.