Most of us have been to wine tastings. It's a fun and interesting way to try new wines, pair them with food and expand your tastebuds. Have you ever thought of having an Olive Oil Tasting? The generous folks at Colavita asked me to host a Summer Grilling party with olive oils, cheeses and dessert - all made on the grill! I received some olive oils from around the world to pair with these delicious summer recipes.
We started off with Classic Brushcetta on crispy, grilled semolina bread to get the party started!
Classic Italian Bruschetta
8 Roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
1/3 cup Vidalia onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup fresh basil leaves
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano slivers
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Cut an "X" in the bottom of each tomato. Submerge in water for about 1 minute. Rinse in cold water and peel. Remove core and seeds and cut into cubes. Add onion, garlic, basil, vinegar, olive oil and salt and pepper. Let marinate for at least one hour. Grill slices of semolina until lightly charred. Brush with a small amount of olive oil and top with tomato mixture. Top with slivers of cheese.
Before the main course, we tasted some of the olive oils from around the world. It's a nice way to break the ice and get some good conversation going! It was interesting to see what everyone liked! Some are peppery while others have a strong fruit flavor that finishes off differently as you taste.
Just cut up some cubes of crusty bread, pour each of the oils into a small dish and start dunking!
For the main course grilled, boneless chicken breasts.
Chimichurri is an essential part of Argentinean cuisine; a bowl of chimichurri can be found on every dinner table. Chimichurri is typically served with steak, but it's also great on grilled fish and chicken.
Chimichurri can also be used as a marinade. I made a double batch. One to marinate the chicken and another batch to serve on the side. This marinade has so much fresh flavor and really made this grilled chicken unforgettable!
5 large boneless chicken breasts, trimmed, halved horizontally and pounded thin.
1 cup fresh Italian parsley
3-4 garlic cloves
2 Tbsp. fresh oregano or 2 tsp. dried
1/2 cup Colavita Spanish Olive Oil
(best choices: Extra Virgin, Spanish, Greek or Argentinian)
2 Tbsp. Colavita red or white wine vinegar
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Process the fresh herbs in a food processor along with all other ingredients. Pour marinade over chicken and refrigerate 3-4 hours. Serve immediately if using as a condiment or refrigerate. If chilled return to room temperature before serving.
For dessert - use your grill! Toasted, grilled pound cake is delicious topped with fresh berries and a sweet/tangy balsamic glaze.
Grilled Pound Cake with Strawberries and Balsamic Glaze
2 cups Colavita Balsamic Vinegar
1 tsp. honey or brown sugar
Pinch of salt
Bring the vinegar to a boil in a small heavy saucepan. Reduce to a simmer and add the honey or brown sugar. Cook until reduced by half and thickened, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt. Let cool completely.
Grill slices of pound cake. Top with fresh strawberry slices and drizzle balsamic glaze over berries and cake. Top with whipped cream or strawberry ice cream.
Colavita is not just Olive Oil! Browse through the COLAVITA STORE for pasta, risotto, tomatoes, sweets/coffee, gourmet gifts and more using COUPON CODE CC15 for 15% off your online purchase. This code will be active through August 11, 2014.