City Pulse

By Stef Schwalb

Can you imagine a world without olive oil? We can’t. So many dishes would never be the same.
Its versatility is endless, but depending on its quality, you may not be getting the best benefits for your buck. A new partnership between world-renowned chef Todd English and Chile Oliva, the Chilean Association of Growers and Producers of Olives and Olive Oil, aims to change that.

Photo Courtesy of Chile Oliva

The “Truly Extra Campaign” educates consumers about how some of the finest extra virgin olive oils originate from Chile and how they are increasingly becoming one of its fastest-growing exports. According to Chile Oliva, true extra virgin olive oils are darker in color and smell and taste like the fruit they were made from, whereas refined olive oil is in general tasteless, odorless, and colorless.

Photo Courtesy of Chile Oliva

Todd English, a four-time James Beard winner, will be featured in digital content for ChileOliveOil.com and its Facebook page, providing cooking tips and recipe videos to illustrate the theme of the campaign, “How Virgin is Your Extra Virgin?” For his signature style of cooking and menu development, Todd considers olive oil an essential ingredient. “My first restaurant Olives was named after this wonderful fruit, and my Mediterranean style of cooking reflects all the regions where olives grow and where olive oils are produced, including Chile,” says Todd. “I’ve always incorporated extra virgin olive oils in my cooking instead of using butters or oil blends, and what’s so great about these Chilean Extra Virgins is quite simply their beautiful flavor. I think there’s a lot of misconception here in the U.S. about ‘Why you can’t cook with extra virgin olive oils?’ The answer is YES, of course you can, and you SHOULD! The freshness and purity of these Chilean EVOOs will enhance the flavors of your food beautifully.”

Photo courtesy of Yasmin Jorge

Since olive oil’s profile can vary depending on where it comes from, there are a few things to consider when choosing one. “You always want to choose olive oils that will enhance the flavors of your food, and not overpower it,” Todd reveals. “These Chilean Olive Oils are robust yet delicate, and their bold, fruity notes combined with their smooth, fresh finish have the perfect back drop for dishes such as ceviches, gazpachos and hot soups, risottos, and even desserts and cocktails. My bartender and I created an Extra Virgin Olive Oil Martini using these Chilean EVOOs, and it was a total hit – the patrons love it.”

In addition to Chef English’s recipes, food fans can also find tools such as a geolocation retail locator, contests, and industry news at ChileOliveOil.com. For more information on Todd English, head to http://cheftoddenglish.com/.

Originally published July 2012
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