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Salmon Steaks with Mediterranean Salsa

Salmon is a delicious and versatile fish, and even though it’s not native to the Mediterranean it fits well into Mediterranean foodways.  Here we’ve paired tidy, elegant salmon steaks with a salsa inspired by that warm inland sea, for a dish that tastes like summer no matter the time of year. Rich, luscious olive oil ties everything together. 

Ingredients

  • 4 salmon steaks, wild or farmed
  • 2 tbsp True Fields olive oil

One of these two spice mixes:

  • 1 tbsp fresh tarragon
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp salt OR 2 tsp fish sauce

If you like, debone the salmon steaks and wrap them into rounds. 

  1. Obtain a small sharp knife, some kitchen twine, and four 6” skewers, preferably bamboo
  2. Insert the knife between the inner membrane and the flesh
  3. Carefully trim the membrane away from the flesh, working towards the end of the flap.
  4. Repeat on the other side
  5. Cut along one side of the spine section, carefully separating the flesh from the bone
  6. Be aware of pin bones radiating from the spine into the flesh. Carefully pull these free – you don’t want them to break.
  7. Cut along the other side of the spine until you’ve freed it from the flesh.
  8. Just as carefully, separate the skin from one side of the salmon steak but leave it attached rather than removing it.
  9. Fold the now boneless, skinless salmon flap into the center.
  10. Wrap the other flap, skin side out, around the salmon. Overlap the loosened skin and tuck it around..
  11. Wrap the salmon steak twice around with kitchen twine to secure it. Tie off and trim ends. Don’t wrap too tightly or the flesh will bulge up out of the middle.
  12. Push a skewer through the steak from one side to the other.
  13. Having prepared the steak, or not, as you like, whisk one of the spice mixes into the olive oil, then brush the salmon all over with the seasoned oil.
  14. Place the Salmon Steaks on the Cinder and set the temperature to 125 F for wild salmon and 130F for farmed salmon.  When the steaks are cooked, remove them from the Cinder, wipe down the plates, set it to sear, and sear the steaks on each side. Remove and serve with a healthy dollop of Mediterranean Salsa

Mediterranean Salsa

Ingredients

  • 1 cup grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup cucumber, not peeled, diced
  • 1/2 cup kalamata olives
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cherry pepper, diced (optional)
  • 2 oz feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
  • 1 Tsp. fresh oregano, minced, (or 1/2 tsp. dried)
  • 1/4 cup mint, shredded
  • 1/4 cup parsley shredded
  • 1 lemon, halved and juiced
  1. It can be difficult to dice something as small as a grape tomato or a kalamata olive. Here’s how to do it:
  2. Take two plastic container lids. Put one, flat side down, on the work surface. Fill with a single layer of tomatoes or olives. Put an identical lid, curved side down, on top. This will act as a guide to help you slice the tomatoes/olives in half, the most difficult cut. Once you’ve halved them all, spread them out on the work surface, and cut the side down. Now you can cut them in half, one or two at a time, and cut those half-of-halves (aka quarters) into as many little pieces as possible. It takes a little time but the resulting texture is far better than using the food processor.
  3. Once all the solid ingredients have been diced or shredded, combine everything with the lemon juice in a large bowl and mix to combine.
  4. Top tostadas with shrimp and salsa, and serve.

Roasted Garlic and Olive Oil

Of all the ways to cook garlic, roasting the heads whole is the easiest, sweetest and most succulent method. Any harsh flavors are caramelized away, leaving creamy toasted cloves behind. Of course, this method is only improved by olive oil, which bathes the cloves in richness, intensifies and extends their flavors, and helps prevent any drying out. If you haven’t tried roasted garlic, cook up a few heads today!

  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F (205° C): A toaster oven works great for this.
  2. Peel and discard the papery outer layers of the whole garlic bulb. Leave intact the skins of the individual cloves of garlicFresh garlic on a wooden background.
  3. Using a sharp knife, cut 1/4 to a 1/2 inch from the top of the cloves. This exposes the individual cloves of garlic.Fresh garlic with the cloves exposed and set on a wooden background.
  4. Put garlic in a baking pan or muffin tin: Place the garlic heads in a baking pan, cut side up. (A muffin pan works great for this, as it keeps the garlic bulbs from rolling around.)Fresh garlic with the cloves exposed set in a muffin tin.
  5. Drizzle with True Fields olive oil: Drizzle a couple of teaspoons of olive oil over each exposed head, using your fingers to rub the olive oil over all the cut, exposed garlic cloves.
  6. Cover the bulb with aluminum foil.Foil wrapped head of garlic in a muffin tin.
  7. Bake: Bake at 400°F (205°C) for 30-40 minutes, or until the cloves are lightly browned and feel soft when pressed.Roasted garlic cloves in a muffin tin.
  8. Cool and remove roasted garlic cloves from their skins: Allow the garlic to cool enough so you can touch it without burning yourself. Use a small knife cut the skin slightly around each clove. Use a cocktail fork or your fingers to pull or squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins. Eat as is (I love straight roasted garlic) or mash with a fork and use it for cooking. Can be spread over warm French bread, mixed with sour cream for a topping for baked potatoes, or mixed in with Parmesan and pasta.

Olive Oil Bruschetta using True Fields EVOO

While nothing’s quite as lovely as late summer tomatoes, bursting with juice and sunlight, this all-season bruschetta comes pretty close.  Here we use the Cinder Grill to firm up quality canned tomatoes until they reach a pleasant meaty texture, and bolster their flavor with some diced sun-dried tomatoes and of course good olive oil.  Enjoy sunshine in winter with the Cinder Grill!

  • 1 28-ounce can peeled whole tomatoes, drained, trimmed of any hard bits or remaining skin, halved and seeded.
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 15 large basil leaves, thinly sliced into a chiffonade
  • 2 tbps chopped sun-dried tomatoes (optional)
  • Red wine vinegar, to taste
  • Sugar, to taste
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 large baguette or loaf of Italian bread, sliced 1 inch thick on the bias
  • Halved garlic cloves, for rubbing the toasted slices (optional)

Directions

  1. Set Cinder to 325 F.  Line the bottom plate with a large sheet of parchment paper. Drizzle about a teaspoon of olive oil on the parchment, sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt, and arrange tomatoes on the plate. Try to keep them from touching if possible, and make sure they are in a single layer.  Once the Cinder comes to temperature, cook, with the lid up, for one hour. This dehydrates and firms the tomatoes.
  1. After an hour, transfer the tomatoes to a cutting board and chop into rough half inch pieces. Transfer to a large mixing bowl with the olive oil, sundried tomatoes, and basil.  Add a little vinegar, a few pinches of salt and a pinch of sugar, mix, and taste. Season further if necessary.
  1. Wipe down the Cinder if necessary and set it to sear. Working in batches, toast the bread slices on both sides on the Cinder Grill (30-45 seconds a side), and rub them with halved garlic cloves. Spoon tomatoes on top and serve. 

Olive Oil and the Keto Diet

Fat is one of the pillars of the Keto Diet, and olive oil should be a major source of that fat.  The whole point of the Keto diet is to reset one’s metabolism so that the body burns fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates. This causes the body to ‘unpack’ those stores of fat we see externally as padding, and use them as well as ingested fat, resulting in a lighter body and many health benefits. For these purposes, among others, olive oil is one of the best fats available, being both delicious and healthy, benefiting certain body systems which might otherwise suffer from a high fat diet. Let’s explore these truths a little more.

Olive Oil and The Heart

As noted above, the keto diet relies on switching the body over to burning fat for fuel, which requires a considerable fat intake. However, one potential drawback to using fat as fuel is that many animal and even plant fats are saturated. Consuming saturated fats raises the risk of cardiovascular disease, among other issues. But Olive oil is here to help, with monounsaturated fats, anti-oxidant polyphenols, and other plentiful nutrients. Olive oil has been scientifically shown to improve cardiovascular and metabolic health. How does it do it?

The Marvels of Monounsaturated Fats

What is a monounsaturated fat, anyway? Simply put, it’s a fat molecule with one unsaturated carbon bond in the molecule. This causes a carbon double bond. In turn this double bond puts a ‘bend’ in the chain of carbon atoms, which means that monounsaturated fats flow at room temperature and body temperature.  Saturated fats are solid at room temperature and contribute to the buildup of cholesterol in the body, while polyunsaturated fats go rancid more quickly than monounsaturated fats.  For these and other reasons, monounsaturated fats are best for the body, and no edible oil has a higher level of monounsaturated fat than Olive oil.

Incorporating Olive Oil

Including olive oil in the keto diet can be as simple as drizzling it over food before serving. Extra Virgin Olive oils especially are natural sauces in and of themselves. Try trimming red meat of its fat deposits, then replacing that richness with a good drizzle of olive oil.  Also olive oil is better at frying than its reputation suggests, and it can be blended into any dressing or soup which needs more richness. Mashed cauliflower with olive oil is so luscious you won’t miss the potatoes or the cream.  Indeed, adding olive oil to any vegetable helps carry fat-soluble vitamins, and also makes the dish more satisfying.

The Keto Diet is all about health, and Olive oil is one of the healthiest and most delicious oils available in the kitchen. So enjoy your Keto cooking, rich with Olive Oil, from your Cinder Grill!

Shrimp Rolls 

Celebrate summer’s seafood splendor with Shrimp Rolls – as delicious as lobster rolls with none of the fuss and at half the price! Also, the shrimp will always be perfectly cooked, toothsome yet tender, when you use True Fields EVOO when marinating.

  • 1 pound 21-25 count Shrimp, Peeled and deveined
  • 1Tbsp Salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 Tsp True Fields Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 rib celery, diced
  • 1 Tbsp chives, minced
  • 1/4 Tsp Salt or to taste
  • Fresh lemon juice, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 top-split hot dog buns 
  • 4-8 leaves of a tender lettuce such as Boston lettuce.
  1. Preheat your Cinder Grill to 155 F. 
  2. Mix salt, sugar, and water until dissolved. Add shrimp and let sit for 15 minutes.
  3. Prepare an ice bath.
  4. Remove shrimp from brine and pat dry with paper towels.
  5. Lay out shrimp in cinder, close lid, and cook for 20 minutes.
  6. At the end of the 20 minutes quickly transfer shrimp to an ice bath. Wipe down Cinder plates. Let shrimp cool for 15 minutes.
  7. In a large bowl, mix True Fields EVOO, mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt, chives, celery, and pepper. Taste for seasoning and leave in the refrigerator to chill.
  8. Remove shrimp from the ice bath, pat dry, and cut it into bite-size pieces.
  9. Remove a large bowl from the fridge and mix shrimp into the dressing.
  10. preheat Cinder to Sear.  pour one Tsp oil on Cinder Plate, spread around, and lay buns on their sides to toast. After 45 seconds or sufficient toasting, drizzle the remaining oil over, turn buns over, and toast other side. When fully toasted remove buns to platter.
  11. Line each bun inside with 1-2 lettuce leaves.  Divide shrimp mixture between buns and serve.

Salmon Salad with Arugula, Grape Tomatoes, and True Fields EVOO

Salmon Salad with True Fields extra virgin olive oil

When the temperature rises few dishes are as simultaneously refreshing and sustaining as a nice salmon salad topped with some tasty TRUE Fields extra virgin olive oil. The dressing can be doubled or tripled as a dipping sauce for good crusty bread, capers, and green onion – scatter those over the greens.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound skinless boneless salmon filet
  • 1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
  • 4 tbsp True Fields extra virgin olive oil, the good stuff
  • 1/2 tsp salt, preferably sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • 4 oz baby arugula, washed and dried
  • 1-pint grape tomatoes halved
  • 2 tbsp white or champagne vinegar
  • A large pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • Add 1 cup of cooked quinoa
  • 1 scallion, thinly sliced

Method:

  1. Season the salmon on both sides with the dill, salt and pepper, place in the oven, and cook to 300 F for 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together the dressing ingredients and some True Fields EVOO.  Taste for seasoning, then toss with the arugula and tomatoes in a large bowl. Spread on a serving platter.
  3. When the salmon is done, lay it atop the salad and serve!