Thank you, Moms Meet, for sponsoring this post, Summer Slow Down with Flavor Your Life. I was selected for this opportunity by Moms Meet; the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.
We take every opportunity in the summer that we get to invite people into our home. We love hosting and cooking is the easiest way to gather a large group around our table. In preparation for Ollie’s 1st birthday party, we have also been spending our time tending to the yard, prepping the space for loads of people.
Something we use almost every day as we cook is olive oil. It’s great for so many things including baking, grilling, and making salad dressing. What I am learning though is there are so many different types of oils! Some are actually better for cooking, and some are better for dipping and dressings. Who knew?
As we savor our summer and slow down a bit to spend more time with our friends and family, I have been researching a lot on the different styles of oils for the recipes I have been whipping up. I recently discovered Flavor Your Life.
Flavor Your Life is funded by the European Union, Unaprol, and the Italian Ministry of Agriculture. They are dedicated to providing the latest in education for home and professional chefs alike on European Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the purest and freshest form of olive oil on the market and is 0.8% free of acidity. European olive oil provides the largest variety of flavors on the market due to climate, soil and time of harvest, making European olive oil the best kind to keep in your home for every occasion and recipe.
The most interesting thing that I have learned is that the greatest impact on taste is the type of olive tree (cultivar), region (which affects climate and soil) and time of harvest. European Extra Virgin Olive Olive, coming obviously from Europe, offers a vast array of flavor profiles, so keep a variety of oils in your pantry for different occasions. The olives harvested early in the season, typically late August, are under-ripe and produce oils that are greener, more bitter and pungent. The olives harvested at the end of the season, usually late November into December, are over-ripe and tend to taste mild and buttery.
There are also four major types of oil. Spanish oil is typically golden yellow with a fruity, nutty flavor. Italian olive oil is often dark green and has an herbal aroma and a grassy flavor. Greek olive oil packs a strong flavor and aroma and tends to be green, and french oil is typically pale in color and has a mild flavor. I also learned that for the best storage, olive oil should be kept someplace dark and cool (around 57° F, if possible), not on a counter or near a stove, and never in the refrigerator. We keep ours in the pantry but I’m starting to wonder if our pantry is ever that cool. You are suppose to keep the lid screwed on tight, and use your oil within 6 months of opening, and within 18 months of purchasing, which is no problem for us. Olive oil doesn’t last over a month in our home!
I was sent Zucchi Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Italy to try. I love that there is a QR code on each bottle that allows you to learn more about their oil and where it comes from! As I am learning more and more about what I am cooking with, this is a special extra touch to help fuel my curiosity! Here’s a great summer salad that I am loving that I paired with the extra virgin olive oil; it is delicious.
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 5 mini cucumbers, sliced into ¼'' coins
- 2 cups mini sweet peppers, chopped and halved
- 3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons diced green onion
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Add cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and mini peppers to a bowl.
- Drizzle olive oil on top.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Toss everything to coat.
- Garnish with diced green onion and fresh parsley.