Edgardo, Olive Oil, And The Book
I met Edgardo Pacheco almost by chance when I went with a friend – Carolina – to the launch of his book ‘The 100 Best Olive Oils in Portugal‘.
As monounsaturated, healthy and fundamental fat in the Mediterranean diet, the theme ‘olive oil’ was already interesting in itself.
The event itself was a privilege … A lesson in how to make good olive oil, the importance of the type of olives used, but also of the process and the place where they are squeezed, and, finally, how to taste it. And all this in the company of the best chefs of the country, who contributed with exclusive recipes using olive oil.
And more, I discovered that there are courses on olive oil tasting, offered by the Higher Institute of Agronomy.
I came out the proud owner of a new book. And amazed by the fact that there is already so much good olive oil in Portugal.
At the event, I wasn’t able to speak to Edgardo. I hadn’t asked all the questions – or rather none. And so, when I decided to start publishing interviews on the blog, he was one of my first names. We were all lucky that he accepted.
Porto Wine, Tea And Much More
Last Thursday, we had an afternoon of conversation while Carolina photographed.
I confess that I didn’t ask many of the questions I had prepared. But for the best reason: Edgardo is such a good speaker, that time went by, and this Glow Chef got much smarter. We spoke not only about olive oil but also about other subjects such as Porto wine, tea and where to find the best in Portugal, exotic cuisine events that take place in the north and more.
Food Or Drink?
I managed to ask this question. After all, we had spent more than an hour talking about wine.
The answer was simple: one doesn’t live without the other.
Curiously, this is how it should be. Wine, as an alcoholic beverage, is not exactly healthy. But in the context of research on the Mediterranean diet (*), it’s concluded that wine is a fundamental element of a convivial and celebratory diet, whose moderate consumption at mealtime contributes to the health of the people who follow this type of regime.
How Did His Connection With Food And Cooking Arise?
Clearly, in the family context. Edgardo’s mother cooks beautifully, as did his grandmother. Siblings also cook, and family gatherings often result in escalating cooking competitions. Better than Fado. 😉
And How Does One Transfer From Political Journalism To Gourmet Journalism?
“In short, because I knew a lot about the subject and was in the right place at the right time!”
Good Olive Oil: How Do You See The Subject Evolve After The Success Of The Book?
The answer came in the form of formulated wishes:
- that the consumers start to be more informed and more demanding;
- that the producers make it easier to buy these beautiful oils that are produced but are not yet in the mass distribution channels;
- and that schools start teaching children how to enjoy olive oil.
And he finishes with a strategic tip, to be used by desperate parents: olive oil as seasoning makes vegetables much more appealing to children’s palates.
The Perfect Wardrobe … Of Olive Oil
According to notes of flavor and aroma, different olive oils combine better with different foods. Some combine better with meat, others with salad, vegetables, fish, nuts, you name it.
So, I got out of our conversation with a shopping list: a Cartuxa for my tomato mozzarella salad, a Herdade da Figueirinha p for steamed asparagus – yes, I like it, and I cook it a lot – and a Quinta do Crasto Premium for my almond pies.
I was happy to find out that the oil I usually buy is a “good all-rounder.” Apparently, it also goes well with dessert.
Are You Serious, Olive Oil On A Dessert?
Try it: here is the recipe for Carolina and Edgardo’s Spicy Orange.
- An orange peeled and sliced
- One teaspoon olive oil Esporão Organic
- One teaspoon of honey
- One teaspoon ground cinnamon
Arrange the orange slices in a dish and season with the remaining ingredients. Enjoy!
Glow Chef TIPS
Olive oil should be used as a cold seasoning and not as fat for cooking. Otherwise, it becomes unhealthy.
Even when you’re on a diet, you must use a bit of olive oil to season vegetables and salads – according to nutritionists, the micronutrients of these foods are better digested, and therefore used for our health, in the presence of fat.
The 100 Best Olive Oils Of Portugal
If you haven’t bought it yet, rush now. Or buy it from the couch, right here.
Photos: Carolina Moreira
(*) If you are curious about this topic, you can, for example, read the page www.alimentacaosaudavel.dgs.pt where you can find interesting information. Or, more entertaining, you can watch Jamie Oliver’s latest TV show.