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Moms Meet and Flavor Your Life recently hosted the Flavor Your Life Virtual Italian Cooking Class. Moms Meet members were invited to participate and learn more about extra virgin olive oil, the Flavor Your Life campaign, and watch an Italian cooking demonstration using extra virgin olive oil.
All About Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Olive oil expert Alissa Mattei kicked off the event by giving us an overview of the process of making extra virgin olive oil. Alissa described the growth cycle of olives. In the springtime, olive trees begin to flower and come summertime, their fruit begins to appear. In October, olives are harvested when the olive fruit turns from green to a red or brown hue.
Harvesting is done by mechanical or physical means only. Once harvested, the fruit from the olive trees are taken to the mill and separated from the leaves and branches. The olive fruits are crushed into a paste and then the oil is separated through centrifugation and filtration.
In order to be designated as “extra virgin,” the final product must go through a testing panel and judged on a variety of parameters, including its fruitiness, bitterness and pungency. To be an “extra virgin olive oil,” the olive oil must have zero defects. It takes a lot of care and experience to become EVOO!
Cooking Demonstration Featuring Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Carnaroli Rice
The Flavor Your Life event also included a segment with Chef Riccardo Zanni, a fourth-generation Italian chef. Using Le Stagioni d’Italia EVOO, Chef showed us three different preparations using Carnaroli rice and extra virgin olive oil.
We learned how to prepare a Saffron Risotto with vegetable stock, parmesan cheese, and shallots. The second dish was another risotto with Italian sausage and broccoli. Finally, Chef Riccardo Zanni walked us through how to create a Rice Salad with zucchini, cherry tomotoes and cottage cheese.
All of the dishes looked so delicious and did not look complicated to make. Chef Riccardo showed us that extra virgin olive oil can be used in a variety of ways to create flavorful meals!
How to Use Extra Virgin Olive Oil at Home
After the virtual event, Moms Meet sent me a kit to try at home. The kit included a bottle of Le Stagioni d’Italia extra virgin olive oil, a box of Carnaroli rice, and a variety of recipe cards.
I decided to make Flavor Your Life’s Beef Tagliata for a simple and healthy dinner last weekend.
Extra virgin olive oil is rich in polyphenols and antioxidants and is a favorite among those who adhere to the Mediterranean diet.
Servings : 4
- 4 x 150g/6 oz beef steaks
- 60 ml/1/4 cup Extra virgin olive oil plus extra to drizzle
- 1 tablespoon crushed black peppercorns
- 1 tsp dried mixed herbs
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 300g/12 oz rocket
- 50g/2 oz parmesan cheese
- Brush the steaks with one tablespoon of oil; sprinkle with the peppercorns and dried mixed herbs to coat.
- Heat one tablespoon of oil in a frying pan over high heat. When hot, add the steaks and sear quickly for 1-2 minutes each side (this will be rare so cook for longer if you prefer your steak less rare). Set the steaks aside to rest. Reserve the pan juices and combine with the remaining oil and vinegar in a small bowl and season with salt.
- Place the rocket on a flat serving dish. Slice the steaks into thin strips and arrange on top of the rocket. Drizzle over the dressing. Thinly slice the parmesan and scatter over the steak.
The quick and easy dinner was so delicious and filling! I added some kalamata olives to our dishes for a little something extra!
Tips for storing EVOO:
- Store in a cool and dark place
- Never store in the refrigerator
- Keep in the original bottle with the lid screwed on tight
- Use within six months of opening
Flavor Your Life Campaign
“At the heart of every European table”
The Flavor Your Life Campaign invites you to learn more about authentic extra virgin olive oil from Europe by sharing the rich history and delicious qualities that these olive oils possess. It is a history and culinary tradition that has been going on for generations in Europe!
I hoped you learned some new things about extra virgin olive oil. I know I did!
To learn more about Flavor Your Life, visit: