As with many of my recipes this one came about on the fly. I was having people over for dinner one Friday night a few years ago. Before having guests for a meal I often go into a last minute panic that I will not have enough food. The funny thing is that I ALWAYS have more than enough. I am constantly sending people home with packages of food. More often than not, I have leftovers for the next two days. I do not know why this happens! I have been cooking for people my entire adult life. I have made countless Shabbat dinners. Why do I always think that I will not have enough food at the last minute. Does this happen to anyone else?
In my panic I decided that I must make another dish. I searched through my pantry, found a bottle of olives and this recipe was born. The good thing is that it can be put together in no time. The great thing is that it really is delicious. One of my friends who came over for dinner that night asked me for the recipe because she liked it so much. This is also a nice recipe for Passover (right around the corner)!
Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Yield: 4 – 6 servings
1 (9-10 ounce) bottle of Spanish olives stuffed with pimentos, drained
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (more or less depending on your heat tolerance – optional)
2 scallions, chopped
1 pint grape tomatoes, rinsed well
2 teaspoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Place the drained olives into an oven safe baking dish. Zest half a lemon onto the olives and add fennel seeds, 1 teaspoon of olive oil and toss together. Seal the dish with tin foil so that the olives can steam. Bake for 10 minutes.
While the olives are in the oven chop the scallions and cut the grape tomatoes in half. Place them in a medium sized bowl. Add a pinch of kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
When the olives are ready add them along with all of their cooking juices to the bowl with the tomatoes. Add the juice of half a lemon, 1 teaspoon of olive oil and mix well.