I love olives. Ever since I was a little kid, I would simply fish them out of whatever container they were in and eat them. To be honest, I still do that now. I can't cook with olives or even have them around unless I just accept that I'm going to be playing, "one for the recipe, one for me". Unfortunately, you can't grow olives in New England, so it's one of the items I buy from various sources across the world. They're little luxuries. However, Lindsay Olives is making a good olive, more widely available these days.
Lindsay Olives is not sponsoring this post, nor am I getting anything in return from them for this. I'm simply a recipe developer who wanted an entry into their "Love this Recipe" Contest.
Lindsay Olives was a sponsor at Eat, Write, Retreat in D.C. last month. A food blogging conference I was lucky enough to attend. It was there I was introduced me to the new line of Lindsay Naturals. Their olives (black or green, I used green today) that are packed with water and sea salt, and that's it. In general, I'll pick up olives from little local specialty stores in my area, which is great. However, it can get pricey on occasion and if I'm picking up staples at the grocery store, or if you're in a place in the country where the supermarket is your only option, these olives are fantastic, and a good choice.
I use olives in a multitude of ways, but as some kind of snack is, in general, my favorite way of consuming these lovely little things. The husband, however, is a fan of dip. Let's be honest again here, so am I. I'm a dip kind of gal. I tend to go overboard now and again, I have a problem with willpower when it comes to these dishes. So when I heard Lindsay wanted all their consumers to come up with recipes using their olives, I was so game for a dip.
This dip is simple. It uses things you probably have on hand and you can also adapt it to your taste. I served it up with tortilla chips, but I think pita chips, or a good bread would compliment this one perfectly. I do not take any responsibility if you eat this in one serving.
Creamy Olive and Feta Dip
Serves: In my case, 1, but it makes a pie dish's worth or an 8x8 baking dish's worth
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped sweet onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 block (8oz) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 6 oz. can green olives (or about 2 cups of olives), sliced
1 teaspoon capers (optional, I like the saltiness they add)
1 teaspoon good-quality balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
In a large saucepan or skillet (even a dutch oven would work), heat olive oil over medium heat. Once warmed, add your onions and cook until softened (about 3 minutes). At this point, add your garlic, stirring to make sure it doesn't brown and turn bitter. Cook for another 30 seconds or so.
Now, put your softened cream cheese into the pan. Using whatever utensil you're stirring with, break it up into chunks so it melts faster. Once it melts down to a stirrable form, add your heavy cream and stir to combine everything well.
Next, you're going to add your olives, capers, balsamic vinegar, and oregano. Stir until everything is coated and well incorporated.
Finally, take a pie dish or 8x8 baking dish, and transfer your cream cheese mixture to it. Sprinkle the top with your feta cheese.
Pop into the oven and bake 30 minutes until golden and bubbly. Serve with your dipping vessel of choice.