Olive Pesto Recipe
INSPIRED BY EGYPT
Since 2500 B.C., olives have been cultivated in the Mediterranean. Their early history occurs in Egypt and then travels north across the Mediterranean Sea to Italy. Centuries later, olives reached the New World and now are grown as far away from their origins as Asia and Australia.
Olives in ancient Egypt extended beyond food. Olive branches made into ornaments and crowns were found in the tomb of King Tut, a famous ancient Egyptian pharaoh.
SAVE FOR LATER
Makes 1 cup
1 1/2 cups pitted olives
2 tablespoons chopped shallot
3 ounces feta cheese
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor. Blend until the desired consistency forms.
If using a mortar and pestle, mash the olives and shallot until smooth. Mix in the remaining ingredients. Mash until the desired consistency forms.
Store pesto in an airtight container or jar in the refrigerator for up to one week. Use throughout the week in the next two recipes. Pesto can last in an airtight container in the freezer for up to six months.
In Egypt, meze is the term that encompasses starters and salads served with bread prior to the main meal. One such salad is called salata baladi. It’s made with tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and fresh flavorings.
Mac 'N Cheese
Some believe that cheese originated in the Middle East since jars dating to the First Dynasty of Egypt were found containing traces of it. While macaroni and cheese is likely from Europe, pasta, often in the form of elbow noodles, is a main ingredient in what some consider Egypt’s national dish, kushari.