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Easter, Passover, and Olive Oil

The olive tree and olive oil have been central to springtime celebrations for centuries.   Spring is a time of renewal, new beginnings and celebrations.  Here are a few interesting Easter, Passover, and Olive Oil traditions: Decorating Easter Eggs. Did you know you can create your own dyes from pantry ingredients? By adding olive oil, you can […]

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Olive Oil Sommelier Course

Join me at the Olive Oil Sommelier Course at Lake Garda, Italy held from April 3-7, 2017.  This is “A course for food lovers, olive oil tasters, gourmets, food enthusiasts and professionals.” It is a  “wonderfully exciting olive oil & food experience for those who want a deeper knowledge of the production, commercial processes, tasting and innovative use […]

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Flavored Olive Oils: An Italian Perspective

I tend to be a purist when it comes to olive oil. My purism stems from my Italian background where there’s always a preference for fresh ingredients. The original purpose of flavored olive oils in Italy was to preserve ingredients that were out of season, for example: preserving peppers, tomatoes or mushrooms. In fact, the […]

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Festivals, Food, and Fun: 2016 Olive Harvest Adventure

The 2016 Olive Harvest Adventure was filled with Festivals, Food, and Fun. The seasonal products in autumn are my favorites: truffles, chestnuts, porcini mushrooms, vino novello (the new wine) and especially, olio nuovo (the new olive oil). It is also the season for wild boar, pheasant, and rabbit. In addition to harvesting olives for 1/2 day […]

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Taste and Test Olive Oil: La Prova del Pane (The Bread Test)

My Olive Harvest Adventure tour features tasting Olio Nuovo (new olive oil).  One way to test and taste olive oil is with “la prova del pane” (the bread test) or the ritual of the fett’unta (oiled slice), a simple ceremony that celebrates the new olive oil harvest each year. On my Olive Harvest Adventure tours, […]

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The World Series and Olive Oil

  What do the World Series and olive oil have in common?  Do you remember Joe DiMaggio, the famous Italian-American baseball player?   He set a record in 1941 of 56 consecutive hits.  He also won nine World Series titles during his 13 years with the New York Yankees. Well, it seems as if olive oil might […]

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Best Tips When Traveling to Florence

Most of my Olive Harvest Adventure Tours begin in Florence.  Not only is Firenze (Florence) my last name, but to me the most beautiful city in Italy.  I have compiled a list of the Best Tips When Traveling to Florence, if you have just a few days in Florence.  What to see/do Places Recommendations and Tips […]

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Baking with Olive Oil Instead of Butter

Using olive oil for baking is a familiar feature of Mediterranean cooking. While it may sound a bit odd, baking with olive oil has actually been done for centuries. Baking with olive oil instead of butter gives cakes and cookies a light texture and can be used with confidence in lieu of butter or other […]

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What to look for when buying EVOO?

In a recent interview by Flavor your Life, (a campaign supported by the European Union) I was asked:  What do you look for when buying EVOO?  I answered that there are three important factors to look for when purchasing olive oil are: harvest date, packaging and traceability: 1.  Choose oil in a dark bottle, metal container […]

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Pairing Food with Olive Oil plus a handy chart!

You can create harmonious flavors by pairing food with olive oil.  It is similar to pairing wine and food. Extra Virgin Olive Oils (EVOOs) are varied in taste. The multiplicity of tastes and aromas make olive oil attractive to consumers who are looking for taste sensations to match each meal. There are basically two distinct […]

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