Bread Dipping Appetizer

Bread Dipping Appetizer

Archive for February, 2009

Mediterranean Diet Eating Habits Focus On Olive Oil

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

People hear the phrase ‘Mediterranean Diet’ and they are looking for a standard diet plan. Unfortunately, this is a case of mistaken identity. The Mediterranean diet is based on the eating habits that are adhered to by those living in the Mediterranean. The Mediterranean Sea has 10 countries surrounding it and while they all have their own idiosyncrasies to their diets, they share the common emphasis on cereals, nuts, legumes, fruits, vegetables and of course Olive oil.

Monounsaturated fats in olive oil:

When researches try to figure out why the Mediterranean diet is so successful as related to people’s health, the first thing they look at is olive oil as it is usually the sole fat used in food preparation. It is a rare case that you will find someone in this region using something like butter. The fact that it is rich in monounsaturated fats is further enhanced with it also being a great source of antioxidants which are proven to help in heart disease and other major health issues. You must remember, they use this for everything from preparing sauces and vegetables to frying fish and it is the key ingredient to their salad dressings.

Compared to other regions, the people of the Mediterranean experience a much lower rate of heart disease. Research has been focused in this area for some time and it has been found that one of the major reasons is the type of diet that they have.

The Mediterranean diet features:

  • Low amounts of alcohol
  • Intake of large amounts of foods rich in antioxidants
  • Small or limited portions of red meat
  • Grilled and steamed fish in moderation
  • Moderate consumption of olive oil as it pertains to fresh vegetables and dressings
  • Large consumption of legumes and vegetables (5 different varities) and fruits (about 4 servings per day)
  • Large quantities of potatoes, bulgur, rice, pasta, breads, polenta, and couscous
  • Exercise is also a large part of their daily routines

The people of Spain, Southern France, North Africa (mostly Morocco and Tunisia), Portugal, the Balkans, Turkey, other regions of the Middle East and Italy all have a diet that is a variation of the Mediterranean diet.

 

Olive Oil in the Meditterranean Diet

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

The Mediterranean Diet’s Most Important Ingredient: Olive Oil

When we talk about the Mediterranean Diet, we are not speaking about a specific set or rules for a diet, instead we are talking about habits that have been adhered to that have been linked to the reduction in heart disease, mortality rates and cancer.

Health professionals are in agreement that the diet of those living in the Mediterranean have much healthier eating habits than those living in America and Northern Europe. They consume much larger quantities of things like vegetables, legumes, fruits, grains, nuts and of course, olive oil. Quality olive oil is loaded with antioxidants and monounsaturated fats. When adding an olive oil to your regular diet, look for brands such as Kalamata Extra Virgin Olive Oil, made in the Kalamata region of Greece, as it not only aids in your health, it will also give a flavor boost to you food!

Here is a quick dish that defines the wonderful flavors of the Mediterranean Diet:

Bruschetta with Tomato, Garlic stuffed Olives and Arugula

1 loaf bread, Ciabatta
¼ C olive oil, extra-virgin
2 C vine-ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
One half jar Iliada green, garlic stuffed olives, roughly chopped
Sea salt (to taste)
Black Pepper, fresh ground (to taste)
One bag baby arugula leaves (make sure you wash them)
Fresh basil, shredded and torn

Set oven to 350 degrees and allow to reach temperature. Take loaf of bread and cut into 2” thick slices. Lightly coat bread with olive oil. Place bread on baking tray and put into oven, cook for about eight minutes until you see that it has turned slightly brown around the edges. Combine all ingredients except arugula. When ready to serve, add arugula and combine.

Spread tomato mixture evenly across slices of bread and basil as garnish.. Serves 6

Makes an excellent appetizer for pasta and soups.

 

Italian Focaccia Bread Used For Bread Dipping In Olive Oil

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

Here is a how-to for making a rustic focaccia bread, one with a nice, springy crumb and golden crust.

Herbed Focaccia You Can Make The Easy Way

  • 3 1/4 C flour, all purpose
  • 1 packet Fleischmann’s Rapid Rise Yeast
  • 1 T sugar
  • 1 T salt
  • ¼ C extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 2/3 C warm water (120-130 degrees)
  • 2 T Parmesan cheese, fresh shredded
  • 1 T herb seasoning, Italian

Method:

Combine un-dissolved yeast, sugar, salt and flour in a large bowl. Stir in 2T of olive oil and water until everything is blended together. Use a 9×13” baking pan and spread dough out to completely cover it.

It will take about 30 minutes for the dough to rise to double it size. Use your wooden spoon to put holes in top of dough and then take remaining olive oil and drizzle atop dough. Combine cheese and herbs to sprinkle across dough. Cover dough.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. While oven is warming, let the dough rise again for 15 minutes. Remove cover and place break in over for 30-35 minutes until you see it has turned a light brown color. Allow it to cool briefly and then slice for serving. Bread can be served plain or with a side of olive oil for dipping

FOCACCIA DIPPING SAUCE

When using olive oil for dipping, it is not the time to skimp on quality. Get the best available. If you have a bottle with a pouring spout, you can use it, otherwise pour directly from container. Do the same thing with some high quality balsamic vinegar.

Fresh ground salt and pepper are the best accompaniments for your dipping sauce. If you don’t have a grinder, go get one as nothing compares to the taste of fresh ground. Put a side plate at each setting. Pour out about 2 T of olive oil in the center of the plate and then add 1 T of the balsamic.

This is a traditional oil and vinegar combination. They will not integrate so trying to mix them is a waste of time. You can add salt and pepper to your taste. This is bread dipping at its best!

 

 

Olive oil bread dipping

Thursday, February 05th, 2009

Bread dipping has been discovered as a tasty trend, and a new change from the tired appetizer, cheese and crackers. This new idea filled with flavored oils, sauces, and breads used in the olive oil dipping dish, will be a tasty treat.

If you would like to serve your guests something besides the traditional celery and carrot sticks, then the delightful new trend of bread dipping using the dipping dish, is for you. For a culinary masterpiece, try adding an olive oil dipping dish and a combination of herb dips. If you want to create an all occasion appetizer with the classy bread dipping dish, then you just need to combine delicious Mediterranean oils, and a different selection of breads. It will not be necessary to go around looking for gourmet grocer. To find a nice olive oil selection, you need only drop by your local grocery store. By being prepared to spend a little bit more for a bottle of extra virgin olive oil, you will find that it has a delightful flavor and is a very high quality oil. It will be a great choice for bread dipping. You will probably find that you may have pure olive oil in your pantry, but pure olive oils, are best for cooking, while the flavor staggers in comparison to extra virgin olive oil.

Do not be fooled when you see the name extra light olive oil, because the calories are the same. The color and the flavor of the oil is lighter and is what is being referred to in this case. This makes a good alternative when you are baking with vegetable or canola oil.

You can instantly serve many oils and sauces you want with the dipping dish. When serving the breads you want, simply put the flavored oils, for example, roasted garlic, lemon juice, and some fresh basil, in the dipping dishes.

Our bread dipping dish set includes, a recipe along with dried herbs that you can re-hydrate and add to your desired olive oil.

[tag] bread dipping, oil dipping[/tag]

 

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