Rock Cod Veracruz with Red Chili Stuffed Olives


Rock Cod Veracruz with Red Chili Stuffed Olives

4 large rock cod (or any mild fish) fillets, approximately 1.5 lbs, (1/2-inch thick)
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
finely ground sea salt
1/3 cup UP extra virgin olive oil

2 larges eggs whisked

1 cup unbleached flour

2 tablespoons Baklouti Olive Oil

2 tablespoons Olive Wood Smoked Olive Oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves minced
28-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
3 tablespoons roughly chopped flat leaf parsley
1 cup sliced Gordal Olives stuffed with Red Chili
1/4 cup capers, drained and rinsed

1/4 cup sliced green onions

Start the sauce by heating Baklouti Olive Oil and Smoked Olive Oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring regularly, until the onions start to brown, about 5 minutes then add the garlic and stir for a bit longer. 


Add the diced tomatoes along with the bay leaf, oregano, parsley, half of the olives, and half of the capers. Simmer briskly, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes to evaporate some of the liquid. Reduce the heat to medium-low, stir in 1/2 cup of water and simmer for 15 minutes. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if desired.

While the sauce is simmering, dredge the fish fillets first in flour, then in the egg, and then back in the flour. Heat 1/3 cup of UP extra virgin olive oil in a very large (12-inch) non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is hot, pan fry the fish for approximately 3-4 minutes per side, or until nicely golden brown and a bit crisp on the exterior.

To finish the dish, ladle the finished sauce onto individual dinner plates, place a piece of cod in the center, garnish with the remaining olives, capers, parsley, and green onions. Serve immediately.



Olive Wood Smoked Grilled Halibut


Olive Wood Smoked Grilled Halibut

The Best Grilled Halibut
1/4 cup Olive Wood Smoked Olive Oil
2" Sprig fresh rosemary, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon medium course sea salt or kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
2 medium fresh lemons quartered
2 pounds fresh halibut fillets about 8 oz. portions -  (or your favorite fresh fish such as salmon, cod, squid, octopus. Not into fish? Use poultry such as chicken breasts or thighs. Not consuming animal products? No problem, get out your Portabello mushrooms and/or eggplant.) 

Put the rosemary sea salt, and pepper into a small zip bag. Close the bag and crush it a few times between your palms. This will season the salt with rosemary. 

In a large zip bag or container with a lid, place the fish fillets. Sprinkle with the rosemary sea salt and gently massage to coat evenly. Add the smoked olive oil and massage again to coat evenly. Deeply inhale... mmm...

Allow the fillets to marinate for about 30 minutes or up to 1 hour. (My halibut was cooked to perfection indoors on a cast iron stove-top grill. However, you can prepare a charcoal grill, gas grill, or even roast the halibut in the oven. It will not matter, because after taking a bite, your guests will be certain that you flew olive wood in from Spain to build the fire over which you cooked the halibut.)

Grill the fish, skin side down, over medium, indirect flame, flipping after about 4 minutes. Pull the fish off the heat source just before it's done, allowing it to rest, loosely covered in foil for a two minutes before serving. This will allow your fish to cook through from the residual heat as opposed to becoming overdone on the exterior. 

If cooking poultry, make sure to cook through to at least 155 F.  Mushrooms and eggplant will require about 15 minutes depending on taste.   

Serve with lemon wedges. 

Makes 4 generous portions or 8 average portions


Pan Seared Sea Scallops with Persian Lime Olive Oil


Pan Seared Sea Scallops with Persian Lime Olive Oil


½ pounds sea scallops, about 14-16 scallops, rinsed and dried thoroughly

4 tablespoons Persian Lime EVOO, divided

kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

Sometimes the scallops you buy at the store are soaked in a liquid that keeps them light in color so you will want to rinse and drain them thoroughly.  In order to get a nice sear (rather than a steam), dry the scallops well with paper towels.  Also, these should’ve been removed at the store but scallops have an adductor muscle which is a tough little flap of meat on the side.  Check your scallops to make sure this muscle has already been removed.  If not, simply peel them off, they can be tough to eat when cooked.

Season the scallops with the kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Add two tablespoons of  Persin Lime EVOO to a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is shimmering and just about to smoke, add the scallops to the pan, flat-side down. Space them out and don’t overcrowd the pan.  You want a nice sear. If they are too close together, the pan won’t stay hot enough and they could steam instead of sear.

Here’s the golden rule: Once you place them in the pan, don’t touch them!  Resist the temptation to reposition them in the pan or flip them three or four times, just let them sear.  Moving them around the pan will just prevent them from forming the nice brown crust.

Searing time may vary due to the thickness of your scallops or the heat retention of your pan but after about 1½ to 2 minutes (of not touching your scallops) take a peek underneath. If you find a nice brown crust about ¼ inch thick, flip them for another 1-2 minutes on the other side.

Try not to overcook your scallops.  Remove them from the pan while the centers are still slightly translucent (check by looking at them from the side), they will continue to cook even after you remove them from the heat.

Scallops can begin to turn rubbery if you wait too long, so serve immediately!  Drizzle each scallop with the remaining Persian lime EVOO right before serving.  Enjoy!