Olive Oil Pumpkin Bread

By Katie Shernan
on September 22, 2018

Olive Oil Pumpkin Bread

Port Plums Pumpkin Bread

We made this rich, aromatic bread in store and got lots of recipe requests. Try it at home, you won't be disappointed! Keep one loaf for you and give one to a friend.

 

Makes (2) 8 ½” Loaves

Recipe Adapted from Martha Stewart

 

Ingredients

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

3/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1 15-ounce can pure pumpkin

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup packed dark-brown sugar

4 large eggs

9 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk

 

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter two 8 1/2-by-4 1/2-inch loaf pans. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt.

Combine pumpkin puree and sugars in a mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer until combined, 2 to 3 minutes. Add eggs and melted butter and beat to combine, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. With mixer on low, add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the buttermilk and beginning and ending with the flour; beat to combine.

Divide batter between prepared pans; smooth tops. Bake, rotating once, until a cake tester inserted in center comes out clean, 70 to 80 minutes for large loaves, 45 minutes for small. Transfer to wire rack to cool 10 minutes. Turn out of pans, re-invert onto wire rack, and cool completely.

4 Ways to Use Smoked Olive Oil

By Katie Shernan
on August 25, 2018

4 Ways to Use Smoked Olive Oil

This extra virgin olive oil is cold smoked in Puglia using natural olive wood. On the palate, it combines delicate softness with a smooth, smoky middle interspersed with gentle spicy notes and a lingering floral finish. Here are 4 ways to use smoked olive oil

 

Marinated Steaks with Smoked Olive Oil

4 - 2" thick steaks: use either strip, porterhouse, t-bone or tenderloin steaks weighing about 8 oz. each
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 sprigs thyme or rosemary (optional)
2 garlic cloves (optional)
2 shallots, thinly sliced (optional)
2-3 tablespoons smoked olive oil
  1. Generously season the steaks with salt and pepper. Place 2 tablespoons smoked olive oil, shallots, rosemary, and garlic into resealable bags along with the steaks. Marinate for 2 hours.
  2. Remove the steaks form marinade and prepare your grill. Grill to desired doneness.

Original Recipe

 

Corn Salad with Smoked Olive Oil

4 ears of corn, raw or cooked to your taste
¾ cup of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 small jalapeño, cleaned, de-seeded and diced
1 small red onion, small diced
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
3 tablespoons smoked olive oil
½ lime, juiced
Salt and pepper to taste

  1. First trim the kernels off the corn cob, and place into a large bowl. Combine with the tomatoes, jalapeño, onion, cilantro, olive oil and lime juice. Mix to combine, then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
  2. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Original Recipe

 

Caprese Salad with Smoked Olive Oil

 
1 ball of fresh mozzarella (about 125g / 4.4oz)
1 large juicy and ripe tomato
1 Tbsp of smoked olive oil
Cracked black pepper, to taste
5-10 basil leaves
  1. Slice both your mozzarella and tomato into thick slices.
  2. Assemble in overlapping layers on a plate.
  3. Grind some black pepper over the top.
  4. Drizzle with smoked olive oil.
  5. Garnish with basil leaves.

Original Recipe

 

Basil & Smoked Olive Oil Pesto

2 cups fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
¼ cup smoked olive oil
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

  1. Combine the basil in with the pine nuts and pulse a few time in a food processor or blender (you may use walnuts instead of pine nuts, just pulse them a few times first before adding the basil).
  2. Add the garlic and pulse a few times more.
  3. Slowly add the olive oils in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the processor with a rubber spatula.
  4. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Original Recipe

Guest Blogger: Everything You’re Doing in the Gym Just Might Be Wrong

By Katie Shernan
on August 14, 2018

Guest Blogger: Everything You’re Doing in the Gym Just Might Be Wrong

At Port Plums, we seek to bring joy and health to your life - even outside of the kitchen! We've partnered with subject matter experts to bring you this guest blogger series. Please enjoy the first installment by local fitness expert, Bruce Cohn of Bruce Cohn Fitness.

 

Everything You’re Doing in the Gym Just Might Be Wrong

You’re a busy person who knows it’s important to be fit. You want to be sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck while training in the gym. And as a strength coach who focuses on performance, I want the same for my clients. But too often the workouts I see are not effective and are, at times, counterproductive.

My first goal in training is to Do No Harm. My clients train hard but they follow scientific principles of progression which take into account both acute and chronic injuries, illnesses, life stressors, and past training experience.

My training programs help clean up faulty movement patterns by looking at what my clients do regularly and include exercises that counter the effects of repetitive movements and postures. Most people sit far too much with shoulders rounded forward, hip flexor muscles shortened, and butt muscles deactivated. The cumulative effect is tissue damage leading to back pain, sore shoulders and necks.

Too many people in the gym are reinforcing bad movement instead of improving movement. I have heard it suggested that if you follow the average male around the gym and do the exact opposite of what he is doing for a workout then you will get a pretty effective workout. You know the routine: bench press, bicep curls, and maybe some time on the bike or treadmill.

Females tend to focus on the inner and outer thigh machines, lifting light dumbbells to avoid “bulking up”, and the long, slow walk to nowhere on the treadmill. Neither gender ends up working on the things they most need.

In either case, these workouts tend to reinforce repetitive movement patterns and muscle imbalances that are responsible for chronic pain and injury. Our predisposition to take the path of least resistance and only do those exercises we already do well, actually hurts us and makes workouts ineffective.

Bruce Cohn Fitness programs address these issues and empower clients to improve performance with reduced injuries as they participate in the game of life. Our programs reinforce function through practice and progression.

At Bruce Cohn Fitness all of our clients do Kettle Bell swings, Medicine Ball throws, and Battling Ropes to improve power and burn more calories. And make no mistake about it: power is not just for athletes. Every time we get up from a chair, climb stairs, or react to a fall we are using power. Does your workout involve force production and force absorption? If not, why not?

In addition to power training, our programs include all of the 5 basic movement patterns: hinging at the hipsbending at the kneestabilizing the spineupper body pulling, and upper body pushing. In simple terms we program exercises involving:

  • Lowering to and raising from benches, floor etc.
  • Balance, core stability and improved tissue length
  • Raising knees, toes, and extending hips
  • Pulling shoulder blades down and in
  • Doing upper body pulling exercises in 2:1 ratio to pushing

Want to perform better in your recreational passions or activities of daily living?

Call Bruce today at 781-454-8500 or email: bruce.coach@gmail.com

3 Ways to Use Espresso Balsamic Vinegar

By Katie Shernan
on August 14, 2018

3 Ways to Use Espresso Balsamic Vinegar

Today we're highlighting one of our lesser known infused balsamics, Espresso! There are countless ways to use this flavorful ingredient in your cooking, but here are 3 ideas to get you started.

 

When you're done reading, use code ESPRESSOYOURSELF at checkout or mention this post in-store to receive 20% off any size bottle of Espresso Balsamic Vinegar

 

Espresso Balsamic Grilled Flank Steak

Ingredients:

  • 1 flank steak, 1 1/2 - 2 lbs
  • 1/2 c Espresso Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 medium shallot, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions:

  1. Whisk together all the marinade ingredients and place in a sealable plastic bag or flat, shallow container large enough to hold the meat.
  2. Rinse the meat, pat dry, and place in the marinade, covered, for 2 hours minimum (up to 24 hours). Turn occasionally.
  3. Heat the grill of your choice to medium-high heat.
  4. Remove the steak from the marinade, scraping any clinging sauce and shallots back into the dish with a spatula.
  5. Pat the steak dry, and oil and salt the surface lightly. Grill 3-6 minutes per side, taking care not to overcook. Baste with the marinade while cooking, reserving at least 1/2 c. When done, set on a platter to rest, tented with foil, while you finish the sauce (let rest at least 5 minutes before slicing).
  6. Put the remaining marinade in a small saucepan and bring to the boil along with any juices that collect on the platter.
  7. Reduce to a simmer and cook for a minute or two; the sauce should thicken slightly.
  8. Slice the steak thinly against the grain and spoon the sauce over to serve.

Original Recipe

 

Espresso Spritzer

This recipe does not actually contain espresso balsamic but demonstrates just how much of a shortcut infused balsamics can be!

A shrub is a sweet and acidic liquid used in making beverages (similar in concept to bitters). Historically it was know as "drinking vinegar." Balsamic vinegars behave beautifully as shrubs in mixed drinks.

Rather than going through the process of creating a coffee shrub as demonstrated in the following recipe, try adding a teaspoon or more of espresso balsamic to a glass of sparkling water for a refreshing treat!. 

Coffee Shrub Recipe

 

Espresso Balsamic Roasted Pears

This is another recipe in which the original version does not contain espresso balsamic but trust us! The deep, caramelized notes of espresso balsamic perfectly complement the mild, sweet pears. Add some salty Manchego or Roquefort for an amazing foil.

 

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 firm-ripe Bosc pears, halved lengthwise and cored
3 tablespoons espresso balsamic vinegar
4 oz Manchego or mild fresh goat cheese, cut into 4 pieces, at room temperature
1/4 cup honey

 

Preparation

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Melt butter in an 8-inch square glass baking dish in middle of oven, about 3 minutes.
Arrange pears, cut sides down, in 1 layer in butter and roast in middle of oven until tender, about 20 minutes.
Pour vinegar over pears and roast 5 minutes more.
Transfer pears, cut sides down, to serving plates with cheese and spoon some of juices from baking dish over pears. Drizzle pears and cheese with honey and sprinkle with pepper.

Original Recipe

 

Feeling inspired? This discount is available through the September 30th!

So Hot! 2 Cayenne Chili Infused Olive Oil Recipes

By Linda Davis Siess
on February 17, 2018

So Hot! 2 Cayenne Chili Infused Olive Oil Recipes

Our Cayenne Chili infused olive oil is hot! Its brilliant red hue hints at the bitingly hot flavor - which lends itself perfectly to spicy hot recipes. Try these two very quick recipes to savor that tongue-tingling flavor, and let us know what you think!

Read more »

You Make It! Homemade Olive Oil Pizza Dough

By Linda Davis Siess
on February 07, 2018

You Make It! Homemade Olive Oil Pizza Dough

You Make It! Homemade Olive Oil Pizza Dough

Our flavorful olive oils are the secret ingredient in easy-to-make homemade pizza dough. Check out the simple, inexpensive recipe and set aside some time to make impressive and delicious pizzas in your own kitchen!

Read more »

Healthy Resolutions with Winter Veggies: Slaw & Sprouts

By Linda Davis Siess
on January 06, 2018

Start the new year off well with a healthy resolution: eat your veggies!

Maple balsamic vinegar, mild extra-virgin olive oil, and Tuscan herb infused olive oil are the stars of these recipes, 2 ways to enjoy cabbage and Brussels sprouts.

Read more »

Lovely Lemon Olive Oil Shortbread - 2 recipes

By Linda Davis Siess
on December 28, 2017

Lovely Lemon Olive Oil Shortbread: 2 Recipes

Lemon infused olive oil adds a rich, bright taste to shortbread cookies! Try either or both of our recipes to bake a delicious and easy-to-make treat - we offer a dairy-free version, as well as a recipe using part butter/part olive oil. YUM!

Read more »

Everybody Loves Trifle! 3 Combos, Bundt Cake Mixes & RE Kimball Jams

By Linda Davis Siess
on November 21, 2017

Everybody Loves Trifle! 3 Combos, Bundt Cake Mixes & RE Kimball Jams

Just a Trifle – but oh, how delicious!

Simple ingredients combine to make a magically delicious dessert: everybody loves trifle!

We offer three trifle combinations to tempt your tastebuds, with tips for success.

Read more »

Easiest Olive Appetizers

By Linda Davis Siess
on November 10, 2017

Easiest Olive Appetizers

Say “Olive You!” With Tasty, Easy Olive Appetizers

 

 

Holiday gatherings and cozy time spent indoors are on our autumn-into-winter calendar: time for conversation, and fun, and food! Time for easy, delicious appetizers to share with friends and family.

Start with olives from Port Plums! Here are four tested and crowd-approved recipes that take advantage of the great flavors found in our variety of stuffed olives from Spain. Perfect for formal or informal gatherings – and full of great taste.

And they're easy recipes! Simple enough to pull together in minutes, pop into the fridge, and have at hand for an impressive and delicious presentation when friends come by.

  

#1: Fig and Olive Tapenade:

This recipe was the hands-down favorite among our tasters. It comes together in minutes to make ahead. It's savory and sweet, with great textures, and makes a lovely presentation. We served it with cream cheese, but tasters suggested that goat cheese would also add tangy, rich goodness. What do you think? Yum!

Fig and Olive Tapenade

 

1 C dried figs, chopped

1 Tb Tuscan Herb infused olive oil

2 Tb fig balsamic vinegar

¼ tsp red pepper flakes

2/3 C almond-stuffed Manzanilla olives, chopped

  • Chop the figs and olives into dice, for easier serving and eating.
  • Simmer figs in ½ C water in pan over medium heat, cooking until tender.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients. Refrigerate, covered, four hours or overnight, for flavors to blend. 

For serving:

  • Place 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese (or goat cheese), room temperature, on a serving plate, and top with tapenade. Garnish with whole stuffed olives, if desired.
  • Serve with crackers or toasted baguette (very nice brushed with garlic olive oil before toasting!)

 

#2: Warm Seasoned Stuffed Olives:

Delicious aromas, delicious taste – heat and enjoy! These olives are wonderful simply piled in a bowl with picks handy, or enjoyed atop crackers or bread. Try them, too, as a topper for a tangy soft cheese such as goat, feta, or cream cheese, or alongside cheeses recommended by your cheesemonger (maybe Manchego? Mmm!). Or – as a luxe and memorable pizza topping!

 

Warm Seasoned Stuffed Olives

 

1 Tb garlic infused olive oil

1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

 

5 or 6 fresh thyme sprigs (strip away and discard large twigs)

2 C olives – try a mixture of:

  • Garlic-stuffed Gordal Olives
  • Seville orange-stuffed Manzanilla Olives
  • Lemon-stuffed Manzanilla Olives

 ¼ tsp salt - if needed, or to taste

  • Roughly chop the olives (easier for eating).
  • In a saucepan, simmer all ingredients for about ten minutes until well heated.
  • Season, if desired, with ¼ tsp salt (or to taste).
  • Serve warm, alone, or with bread or crackers, or cheese, as desired.
  • Cover and refrigerate any leftovers.

 

#3: Awesome Olive Dip

This simple recipe is rich and versatile: use it as a dip, a spread, or even as a special ingredient – tasters suggested it could be a wonderful stuffing for a fancy chicken breast, or a tasty ham roll-up. The seasoned “La Abuela” recipe olives are so savory. My mouth is watering!

 P.S. One taster made fun of this dip's name – until he tasted it!

 

Awesome Olive Dip

 

1 C Pitted Queen Olives, “La Abuela” Recipe (about 12 large olives)

3 Tb brine from olives (or more, as needed), including onion slices and herbs from jar

2 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, softened

 ½ C mayonnaise (I like Caine's)

  • Using a knife, food processor, or blender, chop the olives to desired fineness (I like mine minced, with small bits remaining – not a puree), adding brine (including onion and herbs). 
  • Mix in the softened cream cheese, and then the mayonnaise, adding more brine, if needed, to bring the mixture to a good dipping consistency.
  • Enjoy immediately, or refrigerate for several hours or overnight for even better flavor. Serve with crackers, bread, and/or crudite. . . or experiment!

 

#4: Quickest Lemon Olive Hummus

 Homemade hummus! This is one the fastest recipes ever, and an eye-opener for me. Who knew how simple it is to create wonderful hummus? Chickpeas, olives, olive oil, garlic, parsley: give it a whirl and that's that! (Of course, the flavorful lemon-stuffed Manzanilla olives are our secret ingredient.)

 Quickest Lemon Olive Hummus

1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained

 

1/3 C lemon-stuffed Manzanilla olives (about 12 small olives)

 

4 Tb lemon infused olive oil

 

1 clove garlic, minced

 

½ tsp dried parsley (or 1½ tsp fresh)

 

salt and pepper to taste

  • note: if desired, stir in water, a little at a time, for a less dense consistency
  • Blend all ingredients to desired consistency using food processor, blender, or immersion blender. Enjoy immediately, or refrigerate several hours or more, covered, to let flavors blend. Serve with crackers, pita bread, and/or crudite.
  • This is a recipe to play with, too – try other flavors of stuffed olives to create your signature blend!

Spend more time with your family and friends, and a little less time in the kitchen, with these easy recipes. Start with a jar of exquisite olives – or one of each flavor! – and create memorable appetizers in minutes. Happy Cooking!

 

-Linda

 

 

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From the Blog

Olive Oil Pumpkin Bread

Olive Oil Pumpkin Bread

September 22, 2018

Port Plums Pumpkin Bread We made this rich, aromatic bread in store and got lots of recipe requests. Try it...

Read more →

4 Ways to Use Smoked Olive Oil

4 Ways to Use Smoked Olive Oil

August 25, 2018

This extra virgin olive oil is cold smoked in Puglia using natural olive wood. On the palate, it combines delicate softness with...

Read more →