Parlez Vous Fromage et Olives?

Did you know that olive is the same word in both French and English? Cheese, on the other hand, is different: fromage. We think these two delicious foods bring out the best in each other. We've got you covered with a French-inspired cheese plate and an ooh-la-la easy meal option just in time for your holiday season guests!

Shopping List

  • A selection of Pearls or Early California Olives green and black olives
  • Country French pate
  • Fresh baguette
  • Goat cheese
  • Brie or camembert
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Frozen quiche
  • Salad greens
  • Prepared vinaigrette or mixture of olive oil and white wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
  • Red wine

Start with Olives
Of course, we always recommend starting with a selection of olives – black or green.. From there, add some paté There are coarse, country-style patés and silky, mousse-like ones, readily available in your grocer's deli section. Pick up some cherry tomatoes, cornichons (tiny pickled gherkins), then add a luscious goat cheese and some ripe brie or camembert. Garnish your cheese plate with a sprig of thyme and pair with a freshly sliced baguette, which is the perfect accompaniment to the soft cheeses and pate.

Make It a Meal
Quiche is one of France's oldest and most famous dishes -- originating in the area of Lorraine near the German border. The original quiche Lorraine was made with eggs and milk, but later variations came to include cheese and smoked ham or bacon. It's one of the few French dishes that encourages experimentation, and we like versions that include spinach, mushrooms, and yes, California Black Ripe olives. You can opt to make your own filling (it's not hard) using a frozen pie crust or you can purchase a frozen version. If you opt for the packaged variety, get the plainest quiche you can find and add fresh ingredients on top for the best flavor. Whether "real men" eat quiche is not ours to debate, but it is a delightful meal served with a salad and a glass of wine.

Photo courtesy of COC

Do You Want Greens with That?
To make a basic French vinaigrette, whisk 3 parts olive oil into 1 part white wine vinegar to emulsify. Add salt and pepper to taste. If you like a tangy dressing, add a touch of Dijon mustard or crushed garlic to the vinegar before adding the oil. Toss with your favorite greens and serve immediately.

Click here for more easy entertaining ideas from Musco Family Olive Co.

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