Stuffed Scotch Olives – Perfect Little Party Snack

 

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We’re always on the lookout for something new to serve at cocktail parties and we try very hard to never duplicate ourselves. However, after awhile, you start to run into patterns.  You can only make so many cookies or cheese plates before they become they all start to seem the same. So, anytime we run across a recipe or starter that looks promising, we make a point to write it down for future reference.

Such an instance came up while we were in Portland this past May. While enjoying a wonderful dinner (and Negroni Flight!) at Renata, we were served the most delicious starter of fried olives. They were so delicious that we could’ve been easily satisfied by ordering several rounds of those and nothing else that night. They were basically scotch eggs but with olives instead. Pair with a tasty dipping sauce like a romesco or a spicy mustard, and you’re guaranteed a success on your hands.

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Stuffed Scotch Olives

with Lemon-Thyme Ricotta Filling

24 olives

1 hour



ingredients

Filling

8 0z fresh ricotta cheese
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 tsp salt
pinch of cracked black pepper

Olives

Frying oil
1 lb hot italian sausage, ground
1/2 lb mild italian sausage, ground
1/2 lb pork belly, ground
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne
pinch of cracked black pepper
20 olives, pitted
1 cup of flour
1.5 cup of breadcrumbs
2 eggs

instructions

Filling

In a small to medium sized mixed bowl, combine all the ingredients of the filling and blend together with a fork or wooden spoon. Cover with lid or plastic wrap and cool in the refrigerator while you prepare the sausage mix. This allows some time for the thyme, lemon zest, and salt to flavor the ricotta.

Olives

In a heavy pot, add about 3 inches of frying oil and place over medium-high heat. The frying temperature you want to reach and maintain is 300 degrees F. A cooking thermometer is highly recommended.

While the oil is heating, place the sausage and pork belly into a large mixing bowl, add the spices, and mix together thoroughly with your hands. Gently, you don’t want the sausage to become mushy. Once mixed, allow to rest in the fridge while you fill the olives.

Using a piping bag, fill each olive.

Wrap each filled olive in the sausage mix. You want to do this as gently and as thin as possible. Grab a golf ball size of sausage, flatten to a disc and then wrap around the olive evenly. Remove any excess. Ultimately, you want something approximately an inch in diameter. The size of a gum ball.

When you have the olives wrapped in sausage, you can move the the frying stage. You want three separate bowls for the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs. With the intention of frying 4 olives at a time, roll each in the flour first, then the eggs, and finally covering with breadcrumbs. Carefully add them to the oil and allow to fry for 2-3 minutes. Remove and place on a paper towel lined sheet pan to drain. Serve olives when all have been fried.

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