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Olives with Orange and Fennel

Photo: Annabelle Breakey; Styling: Randy Mon
Total time 12 mins
Yield Makes 2 1/2 cups (serving size: 1/4 cup)
We serve these warm olives--a specialty of Sunset Test Kitchen recipe retester Paula Freschet--throughout the holiday season. Warming the olives makes them especially tender and succulent. Bonus: They make an excellent gift (let cool completely, then pack into airtight jars).


  • 1 small orange
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups assorted brine-cured unpitted olives, such as Niçoise, Picholine, Kalamata, and Castelvetrano, drained
  • Leaves and tender stems from 5 to 6 thyme sprigs
  • 1/8 teaspoon red chile flakes
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seeds, lightly crushed
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

Nutrition Information

  • calories 116
  • caloriesfromfat 82 %
  • protein 0.2 g
  • fat 11 g
  • satfat 1 g
  • carbohydrate 2.9 g
  • fiber 0.2 g
  • sodium 348 mg
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg

How to Make It

  1. Use a vegetable peeler to peel a 2 1/2-in. by 1-in. strip of zest from orange; save fruit for another use. Cut zest strip crosswise into very fine (1/16 in.) slivers; set aside.

  2. Heat oil and garlic in a 10-in. frying pan over medium heat, stirring often, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add olives, orange zest, thyme, chile flakes, and fennel seeds. Cook, stirring occasionally, until warm, about 2 minutes.

  3. Remove from heat, stir in vinegar, and transfer to a small serving bowl. Serve warm.

  4. Make ahead: Up to 2 weeks, chilled. Rewarm to serve.