Green Olive, Walnut & Pomegranate Salad
Source: Turquoise: A Chef’s Travels in Turkey by Greg & Lucy Malouf
Notes: Use the amounts as a guide. I added a bit more of almost everything. Also, make sure the green olives are good. If you are able to taste them — from an olive bar, for example — before you buy them, that is ideal. Remember: if you don’t like the olive before you chop it up and throw it in the salad, you probably won’t like it any better when it’s in the salad.
Substitutes for pomegranate molasses: Pomegranate molasses is syrupy in texture and both sweet and tart in flavor, so if you really want to add a splash (which is all the recipe calls for) of this ingredient, then you want something like a mixture of honey and lemon or brown sugar and cranberry juice. I found lots of good ideas from the Food52 community as well as a recipe from Simple Recipes, but all I ended up doing — did I mention I’ve been feeling super lazy? — was splashing in some white balsamic vinegar, which certainly doesn’t create the same effect as pomegranate molasses but which added a nice bite and flavor.
3/4 cup walnuts
1/2 cup pitted green olives, coarsely chopped (I added more)
1/4 cup unsalted shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds (I added more like a cup)
2 small shallots, peeled and finely diced
1 red Serrano chile, seeded and finely diced (I used green)
1 tablespoon shredded flat-leaf parsley (or more)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon walnut oil (optional — use extra virgin olive oil if you don’t have walnut)
splash of pomegranate molasses (optional)
juice of ½ lemon
freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 350⁰F. Scatter the walnuts onto a jelly-roll pan and roast for 5-10 minutes, until deep golden brown. Pour the nuts into a tea towel and rub well to remove as much skin as possible. Chop the walnuts coarsely and toss in a sieve to remove any remaining skin or dust.
2. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss gently. Leave to stand for 5 minutes or so before serving to allow flavors to meld. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary — add more lemon, olive oil, pepper, salt (just be careful because the olives are salty), etc.