- Kalamata olives are known as a black olive, although they are actually dark purple in color.
- A 4-tablespoon serving of Kalamata olives, roughly 8 large olives or 10 small ones, has 39 calories per serving, negligible amounts of protein, 3.6 grams of total fat and 1.1 grams of dietary fiber. Like other olives, Kalamatas are a good source of calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin K, given its small serving size.
- Olives contain phenolic compounds, which are natural antioxidants..
- A serving of about 20 olives, which you might enjoy in an olive-rich recipe like a tapenade, provides nearly 10 percent of your daily recommended intake of iron.
- Real Kalamata olives are only found on the Peloponnese peninsula in southern Greece. Growing under the Grecian sunshine, Kalamata trees have much larger leaves than other types of olive trees and absorb more sunshine.
Fun Fact: Both the Quran and the Bible mention olive trees, and some olive trees standing today are older than those texts. Carbon dating has shown that an olive tree in Crete is over 2,000 years old.
Here’s what you need…
- 4 small, organic zucchini
- ¼ cup kalamata olives, seeded and chopped
For the Pesto
- ¼ cup raw pecans
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Combine the pesto ingredients in a food processor until creamy.
- Trim the ends from the zucchinis and slice in half the long way. Carefully score the flesh with short diagonal cuts.
- Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush a little olive oil on the flat side of each zucchini and place the flat side down on the hot pan. Cook until the flat side is browned and the zucchini is starting to soften, about 4 minutes. Transfer the zucchini to a baking pan.
- Spread a Tablespoon of pesto on each zucchini slice and sprinkle with the olives. Place in the preheated oven for 8-12 minutes, until tender. Enjoy!
Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 152 calories, 10g fat, 140mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, and 6g protein.