Thursday, December 31, 2009

T'was the night for giving

"The olive tree is surely the richest gift of Heaven." - Thomas Jefferson

I am on page 148 of Mort Rosenblum's Olives and loving every page. I realize it is all very subjective but I hope to make some sense of his history of olives and determine the current leader of olive production as far as a great mix of quality and passion for the fruit. Mort has a great way of bringing the passion to life.

This Christmas as brought me closer to olives with a number of thoughtful gifts. I received a bottle of California Marsala EVOO which I have already used half a bottle of to make Eggplant Tonnato from Peggy Knickerbocker's cookbook, Olive Oil From Table To Tree. Nice recipe albeit on the very salty side. I need to rinse the anchovies next time! Kirsten made Peggy's Orange Ginger Cake, which was an instant family hit.

I also received a few olive oil bath products from The Body Shop via Santa: Olive Shower Gel, Olive Body Butter, Olive Body Scrub and Olive Glossing Shampoo. So far I have used a few drops of the shower gel in the tub for a nice foaming experience leaving my skin moist in this New York winter dryness.

Finally, I got a gift of an Italian olive tree adoption from Nudo in Le Marche. My tree lives in the Rosalio grove and is 38 years old. The variety is Leccino. This spring I will recieve a few litres of oil followed by infused oil in autumn. To make this gift complete, I would love to go to the fall harvest and meet my tree, water it, and give it a hug! It's great to get a living, breathing gift.

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