I’m about to give you the easiest recipe, and the most workable recipe, for an appetizer, or if you’re putting out a tapas spread, or if you just happen to have some olives laying around and don’t know what to do with them. It is easiest and most beloved recipe in all the lands, both known and unknown. You’re welcome.
It’s so easy you don’t even need pictorial assistance. What you do need is:
One container of olives. I like to buy the nice kalamata olives you get at the deli counter, but you can use jarred, or canned. They just shouldn’t be stuffed with anything.
Chopped garlic. Or not. Whichever and how much you would prefer.
A strip or two of citrus peel. If you have just oranges, use oranges. If you have just lemons, use those. If you have both in the house, take a strip of each, if you’d like. And then juice whatever you’ve used and save the juice for future use.
A sprig of fresh rosemary. Dried also works. Or thyme, or oregano, if you’d prefer.
A shake of crushed red pepper, if you’d like.
Some black pepper. Not optional. 🙂 Since we’re talking about olives, no, you don’t need salt.
Put the olives in a saute pan with some oil. Heat. Toss in everything else. Saute at medium heat for about five minutes, maybe. Until the citrus peel and the rosemary meld into one fragrant unit with the garlic, and the olives look like they’ve picked up a little bit of color.
Put the whole thing in a serving bowl.
Five minutes. Eight, if take extra-special care to chop the garlic.
And it contributes prettily to a nice spread you can put out to welcome hungry weekend guests after they’ve made a long drive to hang out with you.
It’s only civil.
Here’s the olives, with a sharp cheddar and some mild goat cheese, apples (that I prevented from browning by tossing them in the lemon juice squeezed from the lemon I peeled for the citrus strip), crackers, crisped baguette slices, and a delicious grainy mustard. And oven-roasted tomatoes; you can find that recipe here.