09 Jan The Essence of Olive Oil
“Liquid Gold” is what many Chefs have dubbed olive oil and for a good reason! Personally, I don’t think I could live or cook without it; not to mention its amazing health benefits. Today, olive oil comes in so many different varieties that it can be a bit confusing and overwhelming when purchasing. My pantry is stocked with several varieties all serving a different purpose. For instance, a “cooking” olive oil should be a less expensive one (not necessarily extra virgin) that is on hand to rub on meats, fish, and poultry or to sauté your favorite dish. Then, we move into the intense beautiful variety, which is really all a matter of preference. My personal favorite is Marque’s De Valdueza (http://therogerscollection.com/Products/Olive_Oils/olive_oils.html) from Spain; it is “out of this world”! I use it for salad dressings, mixing with balsamic for dipping bread, caprese salad, pastas, and more. The robust flavor is an accent to any beautiful dish. Another type of olive oils becoming increasingly popular are the flavor infused versions. On Sunday mornings in my household, we love to make big fluffy omelets with sautéed vegetables and mushrooms that are drizzled with a porcini flavor infused olive oil (http://bakerandolive.com/) or, another favorite, Herbs De Provence – including their Basil variety. The list of infused olive oil options is endless and quite fun to experiment with when cooking. These oils can be purchased in smaller sized bottles as they usually aren’t used as often. I use liquid gold in almost everything I cook and eat; I have even been known to put some on popcorn (a little tip from a good friend of mine). Enjoy and happy drizzling!