Tuesday, January 08, 2013

colavita olive oil review, contest and discount

Tossing Colavita garlic-infused oil with a veggie and pasta makes for a delicioso quickie dinner
I've said it before and I'll say it again: I am not a brand-name kind of girl. I buy generics without batting an eyelash, and if there's parity between similar products, I choose the cheaper option. But I am loyal to a handful of brand-name foodstuffs I deem exceptional. Colavita Private Selection Fruttato Extra-Virgin Olive Oil has consistently been one of them. I've used it for years and even recommended this product in my first two cookbooks, long before Colavita ever knew about me or my blog.

All oils are first-cold-pressed from different olive varieties, hence the color variations.

So you can imagine the happy dance I did the when the nice folks at Colavita sent me a sampling of 4 EVOOs to review. They even threw in a Roasted Garlic Cooking Oil Blend for good measure. I am happy to report that I love each of them. Colavita agreed to share the love with a 25% off coupon for Urban Vegan readers at their online store. Just enter the coupon code UV25. I'd also like to announce a fun cooking contest. The winner gets a FREE bottle of EVOO my favorite Private Selection Fruttato. More on that in a minute after my reviews.

My Colavita taste-test line-up

  • Private Selection Fruttato: I am still in love with my steady EVOO after all these years: assertive but not overly so, with a pleasant peppery finish. I love this on everything – salads, pasta, drizzled inn soups. How do you say "yum" in Italian?
  • Argentinian: When I visited Buenos Aires, I loved the city's passion and intensity. So it didn't surprise me that the Argentinian EVOO tasted like my beloved Fruttato on steroids. I mean that in a good way. It's like the tango – showy, elegant and bold. Fruity flavors but kicked up a notch. Colavita recommends this oil in savory dishes but I used this oil in my Bizcocho cake recipe with great success.
  • Californian: Smooth and light, just like the state. Since I like a stronger olive oil, this was my least favorite of the bunch, but it's nice when you want a more delicate olive flavor.
  • Roasted Garlic EVOO: This olive oil actually tastes like you slowly infused it with garlic yourself. It's a huge timesaver if you want to make pasta aglio e olio, or need any garlic-infused oil for recipes like soups, dressing or marinades.To be honest, I had low expectations since other garlic-infused oils I tried all tasted "off" – garlic flavor seemed either burned or synthetic, so this was a nice surprise. I see it as a definite staple.
  • Roasted Garlic Cooking Oil BlendThis is a respectable, garlic-infused canola-olive oil. I usually use olive oil, but it's a nice respite.

I used the garlic-infused EVOO and San Marzano tomatoes to make easy marinara sauce.A real time saver.
The contest: "EVOO? Sweet!" 
We don't often use olive oils in desserts and it's a shame, because olive oil provides an interesting counterpoint when properly balanced with sweet ingredients. Did you see my Bizcocho recipe the other day? This sweet orange-scented cake featured olive oil as a prime ingredient and it was a shameless hint about this contest.

Your mission is to create an easy-but-inventive vegan dessert recipe using olive oil as a prominent ingredient. [A friendly word of advice: I would stay away from the garlic, but if you can make it work, more power to you.] Then comment here with a link to the recipe/photo on your blog. If you don't have a blog, email me the photo/recipe with the words "EVOO Contest" in the header, but you will also need to comment here. The winner will receive a free bottle of Private Selection Fruttato Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, plus Colavita may even publish your recipe on their web site. Deadline is January 31. I'll announce the winner during the first week of February. 

This could be the start of your culinary career, plant-based Iron Chefs!  Ladies and gentlemen: start your ovens. And blenders. And mixers.

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Dawn said...

Ta-dah! I hereby enter my Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake!


I love using olive oil in baking, and Colavita is a wonderful brand of EVOO.

Great contest! I can't wait to see the other entries!

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