Olives and olive oil are very important in Turkey. Olives are eaten for breakfast (yes, breakfast. Try it.). Olive oil is used to cook veggies, meat, fish, is smothered on top of salads, mixed into dips and yogurt and mixed with garlic for all sorts of tasty dishes. There is a whole category in Turkish cuisine that for lack of better words is translated as "olive oil dishes". These are, yes you guessed it, cooked in olive oil. Most of the time they are served cold. Once you get the hang of them you can improvise a lot, which is what I do. I go to my nearest farmer's market, which I don't have to go very far for because the farmers set up shop right in front of my apartment building every Thursday, and I buy the freshest produce and experiment. Here are some recipes that I love. It might be hard to find some of these veggies in other countries, or they might not be local or as fresh, but you can vary it slightly depending on what's available.
Zeytinyağlı Taze Fasulye (fresh green beans)
2 lbs green beans
2 pinches of sugar
1 cup hot water
3/4 cup olive oil
salt to taste
Wash the beans and cut off the ends. Cut the longer ones into two. Cut the onion into cubes and saute in olive oil. Add the beans. Dice the tomatoes and add them to the pan. Pour the hot water on top and add salt. Cover and cook on medium heat until they are soft. Serve cold.