Monthly Archives: December 2013

  • Spain Tightens Regulations For Bottled Olive Oil

    Every morning, cafes here fill up with people enjoying a typical Spanish breakfast, including pouring olive oil out of a plain glass cruet onto a slice of toasted bread.

    The traditional cruet, however, will be replaced by a labeled, sealed and nonreusable bottle or other type of container under stricter oil bottling rules that take effect on Wednesday.

    Spain is the world’s largest producer of olive oil. The new regulations were created mainly to improve food hygiene. But oil producers also hope the rules will help them build stronger recognition for their brands and even bolster sales and exports to markets like the United States, where Spanish oil has played second fiddle to Italy’s.

    Spain acted on its own after Germany and other North European countries, which consume but do not produce olive oil, blocked a proposal by the European Commission last spring to impose such legislation across the 28-nation European Union.

    Northern countries said tougher rules would produce both additional costs and more waste, with used and half-empty bottles thrown out rather than reused. David Cameron, the British prime minister, also pilloried the regulatory plan as evidence of unnecessary interventionism by Brussels bureaucrats. Olive oil, Mr. Cameron claimed last May, is “exactly the sort of area that the European Union needs to get right out of, in my view.”

    A similar debate has taken place within Spain. But it has been more subdued because the Madrid government clearly sided with oil producers, saying stricter rules would raise health safety, by guaranteeing the oil’s authenticity, as well as give consumers an opportunity to identify the quality and origin of their oil.

    Producers have struggled to raise brand awareness among consumers — and hence the value of their product — even in the olive heartland of Andalusia, in southern Spain.

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    Every morning, cafes here fill up with people enjoying a typical Spanish breakfast, including pouring olive oil out of a plain glass cruet onto a slice of toasted bread. The traditional cruet, however, will be replaced by a labeled, sealed and nonreusable bottle or other type... 
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  • Spanish Harvest Marked by High Volumes, Low Prices

    Ex-mill olive oil prices in Spain are at their lowest point for the calendar year as dry skies in the south favor a rapid harvest and high volumes of olive deliveries.

    This time last year the POOLred price observatory showed an average price of €2.56/kg, after a consistent climb since the middle of the year and amid a dismal harvest. But particularly since April, prices have dwindled and the average ex-mill price for the week to December 22 was €1.92/kg, according to POOLred.

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    Ex-mill olive oil prices in Spain are at their lowest point for the calendar year as dry skies in the south favor a rapid harvest and high volumes of olive deliveries. This time last year the POOLred price observatory showed an average price of €2.56/kg, after a consistent... 
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  • ‘Family’ party is family Olive Oil business

    Who knew that Norma and Bill Tiefel had Sicilian roots? And that their family business is olive oil?

    The family secret was revealed last week when the couple hosted a bash for more than 150 friends and “family” and gave it a gangster theme.

    That’s gangster, as in Vito Corleone, and not gangsta as in Snoop Dogg.

    Event planner Sandy Hoffman came down from D.C. to design the party, turning the ballroom of the CityPlace Marriott into the Tiefellino Olive Oil Importers warehouse, where guests entered through a row of tall wooden racks filled with more kinds olives than we’ve ever seen in all the ‘tinis we’ve ever quaffed.

    Thatsa lotta olives.

    Inside, the walls were stacked floor-to-ceiling with five-gallon drums of “Tiefellino Olive Oil” with bars in all corners busily violating every law having to do with Prohibition, while servers passed hors d’oeuvres, Italian and otherwise, before guests sat down to a dinner of veal chop and pasta, and enough red and white wine to make Francis Ford Coppola weep envious tears.

    The Godfather (Bill), accompanied by an ‘’enforcer’’ said a few words and the it was mangia and salut and ballare dalla gioia to the music of the Jimmy Vali band.

    Source palm beach daily news

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    Who knew that Norma and Bill Tiefel had Sicilian roots? And that their family business is olive oil? The family secret was revealed last week when the couple hosted a bash for more than 150 friends and “family” and gave it a gangster theme. That’s gangster, as in Vito Corleone,... 
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  • Shave With Olive Oil To Save Money And Get Smoother Skin

    Shaving cream ensures that rubbing a blade across your face is a pleasant experience. However, olive oil may actually be better for your skin and make for a cheaper shave.

    According to developer and frequent shaver Chris Inch, spreading just a few drops of olive oil on to the area to be shaved is enough to lubricate the skin and avoid irritation. As well as being much cheaper, it has plenty of other advantages:

    1. Cost. You’re paying far less for a huge bottle of olive oil than if you were to buy the little shaving oil bottles.

    2. Health benefits. Olive oil is well known to have many health benefits. Even Jeanne Calment who lived to 122 years of age claimed she rubbed olive oil into her skin which contributed to her longevity.

    3. Less oily than mineral oils. I have never tried shaving with baby oil or mineral oil, but probably never will.

    In addition to the above, you’re getting all the other benefits of shaving with an oil. It’s faster, cleaner and leaves your skin feeling smoother. I don’t use aftershave and I often purposefully leave the oil on my skin without rinsing when I’m done shaving.

    Even if you like your shaving routine and are already getting satisfactory results, a few drops of olive oil can help moisturise your skin before or after a shave, so it’s worth having it around the bathroom.

    Article source

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    Shaving cream ensures that rubbing a blade across your face is a pleasant experience. However, olive oil may actually be better for your skin and make for a cheaper shave. According to developer and frequent shaver Chris Inch, spreading just a few drops of olive oil on to the... 
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  • White San Blas Olives of Malta

    The white olive may have survived on Malta from ancient times; the Phoenicians called us Malet – ‘the hidden haven’, perhaps for what we had on our sun bleached limestone rock. Traces of the variety Olea europaea have been found in the 4500BC temples at Skorba. Like many islands the indigenous species thrive, but often die out due to changes in conditions or the ignorance of people.
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    Do you remember grubbing up an olive tree – pale in sickness? It may have been one of the hidden gems. Two trees, one in Zejtun and one in Zabbar (the olive towns of Malta) when verified as true-to-type may see the population of white olive trees triple.

    However, the world experts said this Maltese olive was a mutant, an albino and not a true variety. They scoffed and looked disapprovingly down their noses. A man determined, like a dog gnawing a bone, Sam pursued the truth with many hours spent researching ancient books. Folklore of the villages helped guide them to references of the white olive. With Matty’s help an old recipe was found that referred to the Perlina Olive. Sent at great expense to the International Olive Council in Saragossa, Spain the variety was verified and recognised by the European experts that proved the world experts wrong.

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    The white olive may have survived on Malta from ancient times; the Phoenicians called us Malet – ‘the hidden haven’, perhaps for what we had on our sun bleached limestone rock. Traces of the variety Olea europaea have been found in the 4500BC temples at Skorba. Like many... 
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  • Greek extra-virgin olive oil "Golden Drop of Greece" by Fitia Foods Inc.

    Every good cook knows a good olive oil makes a world of a difference at Christmas or everyday dinnertime. We tried many fabulous variations this year, but our hearts were sold to this beautiful Greek organic extra-virgin oil from the regions Kalamata and Volos under new brand “Golden Drop of Greece” by Fitia Foods Inc.(www.fitiafoods.com) will be available soon for top quality olive oil lovers.

    The golden-green blend uses the best of the season’s harvest. While it has detectable aromas of green almond and olive, it isn’t particularly heavy in one area, allowing it to pair well in and alongside a variety of dishes.

    We also love how the oil’s delicate quality masquerades in sleek, modern packaging, allowing for proud display on any gourmet shop or kitchen countertop.
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    Every good cook knows a good olive oil makes a world of a difference at Christmas or everyday dinnertime. We tried many fabulous variations this year, but our hearts were sold to this beautiful Greek organic extra-virgin oil from the regions Kalamata and Volos under new brand... 
    Read More →
  • Tanzania plans to join African countries list which grow olives

    The government plans to establish research on olive production in order to identify whether the crop can grow locally, the Deputy Minister for Agriculture Food Security and Cooperatives, Adam Malima the Deputy Minister for Agriculture Food Security and Cooperatives in Tanzania said.

    Speaking in Dodoma last week, he said Tanzania has temperate weather, subtropical and tropical areas which allow production of the crop .

    African countries which grow olives are South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt .

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    The government plans to establish research on olive production in order to identify whether the crop can grow locally, the Deputy Minister for Agriculture Food Security and Cooperatives, Adam Malima the Deputy Minister for Agriculture Food Security and Cooperatives in Tanzania... 
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  • Greece Flip-Flops on EVOO Labeling

    Last year Dr. Prokopios Magiatis and Dr. Eleni Melliou from the Athens University announced their discovery of a new fast and accurate tool to measure key health promoting compounds found in extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) such as oleocanthal and oleacein. Using Quantitive 1H-NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) calibrated to specific frequency the amount of these two compounds found in EVOO can be accurately measured.
    At the same time, the EU clarified the use of health claims placed on the labels of extra virgin olive oils that contained a base amount of hydroxytyrosol and its derivatives: ”Olive oil polyphenols contribute to the protection of blood lipids from oxidative stress.”

    The regulation further stipulated, “The claim may be used only for olive oil which contains at least 5 mg of hydroxytyrosol and its derivatives (e.g. oleuropein complex and tyrosol) per 20 g of olive oil. In order to bear the claim information shall be given to the consumer that the beneficial effect is obtained with a daily intake of 20 g of olive oil.”

    Using the NMR method of measurement, tests were conducted on a variety of Greek EVOOs. Many were found to contain high levels of oleocanthal and oleacein. Olive growers were eager to publicize their results and sought to get an opinion from the Greek authorities on whether the measuring of oleocanthal and oleacein was sufficient to make the above health claim on the label based on the EU Regulation 432/2012. Read full article at OliveOilTimes

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    Last year Dr. Prokopios Magiatis and Dr. Eleni Melliou from the Athens University announced their discovery of a new fast and accurate tool to measure key health promoting compounds found in extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) such as oleocanthal and oleacein. Using Quantitive 1H-NMR... 
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  • Sunora Foods Inc. Begins Trading on TSX Venture Exchange

    Sunora Foods Inc. (formerly Thoroughbred Capital Inc.) (the “Corporation”) announced today that it has begun trading on the TSX Venture Exchange (the “TSX-V”) under the symbol “SNF” pursuant to the TSX-V’s Final Exchange Bulletin issued on December 19, 2013 in respect of its Qualifying Transaction.

    Information relating to the closing of the Qualifying Transaction including details of the transaction, management and board of directors was previously announced on December 17, 2013; to view this information, readers are directed to the Corporation’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com

    About Sunora Foods Inc.

    Sunora was founded by Steve Bank in 1990. Over its twenty-three year history of operations the company has grown from a small startup supplying a limited number of Canola oil products to the Canadian and United States markets to a consistently profitable trader in the global food oil industry.

    Although Sunora’s primary trading product is Canola oil, it also trades a variety of other food oil products, including corn oil, soybean oil, olive oil and specialty oils (including blends of Canola with extra virgin olive oil and organic oils) under the “Sunora” and “Sunera” brands and numerous private labels, to customers in thirty different countries across the globe.

    Sunora buys food oils in large commercial quantities from Seed Crushers and resells the food oils either in bulk to food oil processors or in smaller quantities that are repackaged for customers in the retail and food services industries around the world. Repackaging is done under the Sunora brands and private labels.

    To find out more about Sunora Foods Inc. , visit our website at www.sunora.com .

    Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release.
    Source marketwatch

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    Sunora Foods Inc. (formerly Thoroughbred Capital Inc.) (the “Corporation”) announced today that it has begun trading on the TSX Venture Exchange (the “TSX-V”) under the symbol “SNF” pursuant to the TSX-V’s Final Exchange Bulletin issued... 
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  • India: Olive oil prices may fall 20%

    Olive oil brands, such as Leonardo, Borges and Figaro, are expected to get cheaper by up to 20 per cent, as crop production turns normal. During the course of the year, olive oil prices had increased by 60 per cent.

    “Price increases came about due to a severe crop shortfall last year, coupled with steep rupee depreciation. While this year’s crop is normal and producer prices in Spain and Italy have started a downward trend, it will take about six months for this to translate into a 20 per cent decline in retail prices in India,” V.N. Dalmia, President, Indian Olive Association, said.

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    Olive oil brands, such as Leonardo, Borges and Figaro, are expected to get cheaper by up to 20 per cent, as crop production turns normal. During the course of the year, olive oil prices had increased by 60 per cent. “Price increases came about due to a severe crop shortfall... 
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  • Rising global demand for aerosol packaged olive oils has prompted Lindal Group

    Lindal presence in the Mediterranean oil producing regions may grow – along with global demand for its aerosol solution.

    Rising global demand for aerosol packaged olive oils has prompted Lindal Group – a worldwide leader in aerosol packaging solutions – to reevaluate its production capacity and consider expansion in the Mediterranean olive producing region, according to Philip Brand, the firm’s Global Marketing Director.

    Major brands such as Bertolli have successfully created aerosol olive oils using Lindal Group’s Cozy model, plus oil insert, according to Brand. The company’s Global Innovation Center is working with customers to develop new olive oil packaging, from concept to retail product. This latest Lindal facility is designed to leverage the company’s global aerosol expertise and further support customers in development of new generation packaging solutions.

    “The global popularity of aerosol olive oil format makes it logical for us to expand production near the olive producing regions, which shortens supply chains and maximizes efficiencies,” Brand said. “In addition to Bertolli, other brands have our system under consideration, for a variety of reasons.”

    Bertolli launched its three-SKU line of Extra Virgin Spray Originals and Carbonell, Spain’s olive oil market leader, is also on-board with Lindal’s platform, with brands such as Heritage, Carapelli, Hojiblanca, Koipe, Koipesol, Sasso, Louit, Friol and Maya, according to Brand.

    The surging worldwide popularity of the Mediterranean Diet, combined with consumers seeking convenience, product purity and value, is driving growth in the vibrant olive oil market. As a result, usage of the Lindal Group Cozy actuator, with oil insert, continues to grow. The aerosol olive oils are easy for consumers to use and provide accurate, sparing, 360-degree operation, plus long-lasting, fresh flavor.

    “The market potential is unlimited and the consumer is primed for innovation in this category,” Brand said. “Olive oil packaging has been virtually unchanged for decades and today’s consumers seek new ways to enjoy healthful products.”

    According to Lindal Group executives, the global market for olive oil is exploding and is one of the food industry’s fastest growing segments. In the relatively mature U.S. market alone, olive oil consumption is expected to more than double by 2020. Besides consumption leaders Spain, Italy and the U.S., olive oil consumption in China has grown 70 percent a year for the last decade. In fact, industry reports state that China, Japan and India will soon be on the list of largest worldwide olive oil consumers.

    Aerosol olive oils offer enhanced shelf-life stability and purity. The oil itself is separated from the propellant, thanks to Lindal’s BOV technology, and thus protected from light and air – the enemies of longevity. This enhances flavor as well as hygienic appeal. Further, aerosol olive oils allow precise, efficient usage for Mediterranean style recipes. “And, as with other aerosol-based foods we supply, the spray olive oils are a delight to use,” said Brand.

    The LINDAL Group is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of valves, actuators and spray caps for aerosol products and is renowned for its innovative packaging solutions.

    Article source packagingeurope

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    Lindal presence in the Mediterranean oil producing regions may grow – along with global demand for its aerosol solution. Rising global demand for aerosol packaged olive oils has prompted Lindal Group – a worldwide leader in aerosol packaging solutions – to reevaluate its... 
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  • NAOOA said the USITC report on an investigation in olive oil industry “fell short...”

    The North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA) said the report on an investigation into the olive oil industry by the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) “fell short of the objective analysis that Congress requested,” and “favored the narrow perspective of the domestic industry.”

    In a copy of a letter to the USITC chairman dated December 6 and obtained by Olive Oil Times, NAOOA executive vice president Eryn A. Balch laid out the group’s response to the report released last September that some experts said would provide ample grounds for trade actions and formal WTO complaints against E.U. olive oils imported into the U.S.

    Balch complained that the report’s “widespread reliance” on the terms “low quality” and “high quality” to describe olive oils that meet or exceed the International Olive Council extra virgin grade standard led to the “erroneous implication” that some olive oils that make the grade are “more worthy” than others that also meet the benchmarks. read more oliveoiltimes

    U.S. International Trade Commission Report: Olive Oil: Conditions of Competition between U.S. and Major Foreign Supplier Industries

    This report describes and analyzes the factors affecting competition between the United States and major olive oil producing countries.

    It provides: (a) an overview of global production, consumption, exports, and imports during 2008–12 and 2013 where available; (b) an analysis of the factors impacting consumption in the U.S. market; (c) profiles of the olive oil industries in the United States and other major producing countries; and (d) an examination of competition between firms and countries in both the global and U.S. market.

    Global demand for and consumption of olive oil have increased significantly since the 1990s. While the United States and other “New World” players, such as Australia, Argentina, and Chile, have emerged as both producers and consumers, countries in the European Union (EU) and North Africa still dominate global production, consumption, and trade.

    Almost 60 percent of global exports by volume were intra-EU trade flows during 2008–12. The largest bilateral trade flows during this period were Spanish exports of olive oil to Italy, where large multinational companies source oil from around the world, blend and bottle it, and then re-export the final product to third-country markets, including the United States.
    The benchmark for international standards for determining the grade of an olive oil are set by the International Olive Council.

    Our findings suggest that the current standards for extra virgin olive oil are widely unenforced and allow a wide range of olive oil qualities to be marketed as extra virgin. Broad and unenforced standards can lead to adulterated and mislabeled product, weakening the competitiveness of high-quality U.S.-produced olive oil in the U.S. market. In addition, many U.S. consumers are unable to distinguish quality differences and, as a result, gravitate toward less costly oils, giving an advantage to large bottlers that sell low-cost imported product.

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    The North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA) said the report on an investigation into the olive oil industry by the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) “fell short of the objective analysis that Congress requested,” and “favored the narrow perspective of the... 
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  • Olive oil importers hit out at 'buy Australian' campaign

    The Australian Olive Oil Association, which represents distributors of imported and domestic olive oil in Australia, has lodged a complaint with the country’s competition watchdog over a publicity campaign from growers body, the Australian Olive Association.

    The AOOA has claimed an ad push by the growers’ association encouraging consumers to buy Australian olive oil is “misleading” and contacted the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

    The AOA, which represents Australian olive producers, has asserted Australian consumers are being “duped at the checkout” because “nine out of ten imported olive oil brands fail the Australian standard”.

    “Testing by the Australian Olive Association between September 2011 and August 2013 found that, of 106 imported oils tested representing 40 different brands, 77% of oils tested failed the Australian Standard AS 5264-2011 and 93% of brands tested failed the Standard for at least one product of their brand range,” the olive growers association claimed.
    read more at just-food

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    The Australian Olive Oil Association, which represents distributors of imported and domestic olive oil in Australia, has lodged a complaint with the country’s competition watchdog over a publicity campaign from growers body, the Australian Olive Association. The AOOA has... 
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  • International Congress Extra Virgin Olive Oil Córdoba (Spain) December 17-18, 2013

    The aim of this Congress is the promotion of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, as integrating element of Mediterranean diet under three premises:

    • EVOO and quality assurance
    • EVOO and health
    • Commitment to the consumer

    The increase of the consumption because of the extra virgin olive oil’s quality is the key to foster the olive sector. This Congress will facilitate to the consumer, information of the extraordinary values of the olive juice, providing simple tools to learn to appreciate and enjoy it. The target is to inform on the reality of extra virgin: a natural product that gathers a large variety of flavors and aromas, together with nutritional benefits.

    The Congress will provide the producer with the tools to achieve excellence in the production of extra virgin olive oil and will facilitate contact among the best olive oil producers world’s wide.

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    The aim of this Congress is the promotion of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, as integrating element of Mediterranean diet under three premises: • EVOO and quality assurance • EVOO and health • Commitment to the consumer The increase of the consumption because of the extra virgin... 
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  • New Olive Oil Market Research from TMR - Global Industry Size, Share, Growth, Trends & Forecast, 2012-18

    Transparency Market Research (TMR) is a market intelligence company providing global business research reports and consulting services. Their exclusive blend of quantitative forecasting and trends analysis provides forward-looking insights for thousands of decision-makers.

    Research Synopsis:
    Olive trees, from which olive oil is extracted, are generally found in the Mediterranean countries such as Spain, Italy and Greece. This oil is commercially manufactured by grinding olives and extracting the oil from the olives it by chemical or mechanical process. Common uses of olive oil are in making soaps, pharmaceuticals, cooking and cosmetics. The different product types of olive oils are extra virgin olive oils, virgin olive oils, refined olive oils and other miscellaneous varieties, depending on the method of extraction. The increasing demand for olive oil in developing countries like India, China and Brazil is one of the primary drivers. This is owing to the strong economic growth and increasing awareness of health benefits among consumers, coupled with a greater exposure to the western lifestyle, there seems to be an upward trend in consumption of olive oil. In addition, countries like USA and Australia are developing a national standard for grading olive oil. The global standardization of olive oil is attracting more consumer demand for the product.

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    Transparency Market Research (TMR) is a market intelligence company providing global business research reports and consulting services. Their exclusive blend of quantitative forecasting and trends analysis provides forward-looking insights for thousands of decision-makers. Research... 
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  • Recipe: Quick Appetizers with Extra Virgin Olive Oil

    Mushroom Crostini

    Ingredients:

    1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
    2 ½ cups sliced Crimini mushrooms (about 8 ounces)
    1 cup sliced button mushrooms
    ¼ teaspoon salt
    2 teaspoons minced fresh or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
    ½ teaspoon all-purpose flour
    1/8 teaspoon pepper
    1 garlic clove, halved
    8 (1/2-inch-thick) Italian bread slices, toasted (about 4 ounces)
    Thyme sprigs (optional)
    8 oz. Fontina cheese

    Directions:

    Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and salt; stir well.
    Cover and cook for 5 minutes,increase heat to medium-high; add minced thyme, flour, and pepper and cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.
    Rub cut sides of garlic over bread slices.
    Spoon 2 tablespoons mushroom mixture onto each bread slice, top with Fontina cheese.
    Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.

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    Mushroom Crostini Ingredients: 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil 2 ½ cups sliced Crimini mushrooms (about 8 ounces) 1 cup sliced button mushrooms ¼ teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons minced fresh or ½ teaspoon dried thyme ½ teaspoon all-purpose flour 1/8 teaspoon pepper 1 garlic clove,... 
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  • Recipe: Tricolor Christmas Bread with Olive Oil

    This holiday bread is a festive mix flavored with sun-dried tomatoes, black olives and pesto, with each slice showing off a cross-section of colors.

    The original recipe calls for this to make a single loaf, and if you have a big enough pan — and need a seven-pound loaf of bread — go for it. We’ve divided it into two loaves here, but dividing it into four loaves results in more manageable finished products that are suitable for sharing.

    TRICOLOR CHRISTMAS BREAD

    Makes two 3 1/2-pound loaves

    TOMATO PASTE (makes 5 ounces)
    1/4 cup whole sun-dried tomatoes
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    2 teaspoons chopped garlic
    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

    PESTO
    1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
    2 tablespoons pine nuts
    1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

    TAPENADE
    4 ounces (3/4 cup) pitted kalamata olives
    1 anchovy fillet
    2 teaspoons chopped garlic
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

    DOUGHS
    3/4 ounce (3 single packets) active dry yeast
    3 tablespoons sugar
    3 cups warm water (about 110 degrees)
    3 teaspoons kosher salt
    10 1/2 cups flour, preferably bleached/all-purpose
    3 teaspoons vegetable oil, for the work bowls

    ASSEMBLY
    Flour, for the work surface
    1 large egg, beaten
    Kosher salt
    Coarsely ground black pepper

    For the tomato paste: Fill a small saucepan halfway with water and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Drain. Transfer the softened tomatoes to a food processor or blender and add the olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Puree until the mixture is smooth, about 15 seconds.

    For the pesto: Combine the basil, pine nuts, garlic, pepper, salt, olive oil and cheese in a food processor or blender. Puree until the mixture is smooth, about 15 seconds.

    For the tapenade: Combine the olives, anchovy, garlic, olive oil and pepper in a food processor or blender. Puree until the mixture is smooth, about 15 seconds.

    For the dough: Combine one-third (1 packet) of the yeast, 1 tablespoon of the sugar and 1 cup of the water in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Beat on low speed for 1 minute. Add the sun-dried tomato paste, 1 teaspoon of the salt and 3 1/2 cups of the flour. Beat at low speed until all the flour is incorporated, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium; beat until the mixture forms a ball, pulls away from the sides of the bowl and climbs up the dough hook.

    Use a teaspoon of the oil to grease a work bowl. Transfer the dough to the bowl, using your hands to form the dough into a smooth ball before you put it in. Turn the dough over to coat it evenly with the oil, then cover with plastic wrap to rest in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles in size, about 1 hour.

    Repeat the process with the tapenade, and again with the pesto, to create a total of 3 flavored doughs. Use the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil to grease those two work bowls.

    For assembly: Lightly flour a work surface. Line two large baking sheets (at least 15-by-17-inch) with parchment paper.

    Remove each ball of dough from its bowl and invert it onto the work surface. Cut each one in half (for a total of 6 sections of dough). Working with one piece of each color of dough, roll and stretch the dough into a log that’s about 18 inches long. Repeat with the remaining doughs.
    Line up 3 dough logs (one of each color) next to each other; pinch the ends of all three together. Begin braiding, overlapping each log one at a time over the other, then pinch together the other end. Tuck the pinched ends underneath the braided loaf. Place the bread on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat with the remaining 3 dough logs to braid/form a second loaf. Cover each with plastic wrap to rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

    Position oven racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat to 350 degrees.

    Use a pastry brush to glaze the tops of each loaf with the beaten egg, then generously sprinkle the salt and pepper on each loaf. Bake on the upper and lower racks for 20 to 25 minutes, then rotate the baking sheets top to bottom and front to back. Bake until nicely browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the bread to a wire rack to cool for at least 1 hour before serving.

    VARIATION: To make four smaller loaves, divide each flavor of dough into four equal pieces and braid as directed. Reduce baking time to 30-35 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through.

    Adapted from “Emeril’s Creole Christmas,” by Emeril Lagasse and Marcelle Bienvenu (Morrow, 1997)
    recipe from nhregister

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