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Olive Oil Cookies with Lemon and Thyme

2/3 cup olive oil
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons lemon zest
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon finely minced thyme
sugar for rolling
powdered sugar for dusting

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer using the paddle attachment, add olive oil, sugar, egg, vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice and beat on low speed until smooth. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beat to incorporate all ingredients.
3. Add the thyme and mix on low just to incorporate.
4. Using about a teaspoon amount (or more if you like a larger cookie), roll dough into balls and then roll the balls into a bowl of granulated sugar.
5. Place the balls onto the cookie sheet, and flatten slightly with the bottom of a cup.
6. Bake about 8-10 minutes, and then cool on a wire rack.
7. When completely cooled, dust with powdered sugar.


Gazpacho Andaluz

(cold tomato soup from Andalucia, Spain)


gazpacho recipe image


Ingredients: serves 4
-2 slices of day-old country bread, crusts removed and cut into small pieces
- 2 pounds of the best tomatoes you can find, cut into quarters (seeded if desired)
-2 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar
-1/2 cup high-quality extra virgin olive oil
-1/4 cup water (optional)
-1 garlic clove, minced
-1 medium cucumber, peeled and quartered
-1 small red bell pepper, stem removed, seeded and diced
-1 small green bell pepper, stem removed, seeded and diced
-1/2 small red onion, peeled and chopped


1. Add the bread and tomatoes to a food processor and add the garlic, cucumber, and red and green bell peppers. Process until very smooth.
2. Add half a teaspoon of salt, the olive oil and the vinegar to the mixture and blend well. You may adjust the salt and vinegar to your liking. If the mixture seems a bit thick, you can thin it out a little using the water.
3. Chill for 3 hours.
4. Drizzle a bit of olive oil over each cupfull of soup before serving with good crusty bread!


Papas Aliñás de Cádiz

(marinated potatoes from Cádiz, Spain)


gazpacho recipe image


Ingredients: serves 2
-1.5 lbs medium sized new potatoes
-1 small, mild, white onion
-1 heaping tablespoon of freshly chopped parsley (dried parsley should not be used)
-2/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
-2 tablespoons of Sherry wine vinegar (in a pinch you may substitute red or white wine vinegar)
-1.5 tablespoons coarse salt
-Optional Ingredients: 1 hardboiled egg, 1 can of tuna in oil,drained, olives


1. Wash the unpeeled potatoes thoroughly under running water to remove any dirt.
2. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Set the pot to medium high heat. When it begins to boil, add 1 tablespoon of coarse salt to the water.
3. The potatoes will need to cook for approximately 25 minutes. You can check for doneness by poking one of the potatoes with a toothpick. (If your potatoes are small, check them for doneness a little sooner).
4. While the potatoes are cooking finely chop the onion and parsley.
5. When the potatoes are done remove the pot from the heat but leave the potatoes in the water to cool for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the potatoes from the water and place them in a strainer until they are lukewarm to the touch (20-30minutes).
6. You should be able to hold a potato in your hand without burning yourself. If you can, peel the potatoes with your fingers. Slice the peeled potatoes about a 1/4 inch thick and place them in a glass or porcelain casserole dish.
7. Add in the green onion and parsley and mix well. Add the remaining half tablespoon of coarse salt, mix well, add the vinegar, mix some more, and then add the olive oil and and mix it all together. If you want to add any of the optional ingredients do so now. Just mix them in with the oil. The potato salad is ready to eat when it has cooled to room temperature.
8. The salad can be refrigerated but cold temperature changes the flavor of pota-toes so it is best served a room temp. Cover with plastic wrap while it cools. This recipe is the traditional Cadiz, Spain variation. It is common to spruce it up to one’s liking by adding any of the following: hard-boiled egg, tuna, peas, artichoke, roasted red pepper, olives, etc.