Why put plain old olives out at your next party when instead you can dress them up and have them be a focal point of the snacks table. At Asellina, cerignola olives are stuffed with chicken, dipped in flour, and deep-fried to crispy perfection. Chef Marco Porceddu reveals how.
“Cerignola olives are perfect for stuffing and are my favorite olives,” says Porceddu. “Not to mention they come in different colors: black, yellow, green, and red. It’s definitely not your average olive, and customers remember us for it.”
Asellina’s Stuffed Cerignola Olives
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 cups canola oil
1 large chicken breast, cut into chunks
1/4 cup diced carrots
1/4 cup diced celery
1/4 cup diced white onion
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano cheese
16 large cerignola olives
1 cup flour
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup semolina
In a sauté pan over medium heat, heat the olive oil and add the chicken, carrots, celery, and onions. Cook and stir, then place in an oven preheated to 350 degrees F for 5 minutes. Remove and cool, then place the chicken mixture into the food processor. Add the Parmigiano cheese, pulse, then set aside.
Remove the pits from the olives using a paring knife (carefully rotate the blade around the pit until the pit can be pushed out). Take about 1 teaspoon of stuffing, enough to fill the olive and form a small football shape, molding the stuffing on both ends and along the opening of the side; repeat for each olive. Once the olives are stuffed, lightly dust them with flour then dip them into the egg wash.
Place the semolina flour on a plate, then roll the olives in the flour, coating them evenly. Bring the canola oil to frying temperature, between 350 and 375 degrees F, and fry until crisp (about 2 minutes). Cool on paper towels to remove excess oil, and serve warm.
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