You will find recipes that use flavored olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sea salt and more. In many of the recipes we can interchange the different flavors of vinegar or olive oil with other similarly flavored products. Many flavored oils and vinegars are used seasonally, so the recipes here start that way. Also, check out the Recipes page for every day suggestions on how to use oil and balsamic.
Olive Oil is made when olives are pressed together and their oils are crushed out. For much more information about this process you can read about it here. For my purposes I have found that olive oil tastes good and only adds to a recipe. I know there is some debate about using olive oil at high temperatures but I’m want to talk about taste not science.
The recipes here use olive oil as a central or significant ingredient. Sometimes you will be able to change the flavor this is being used and sometimes it would only hurt the recipe. Please read each recipe for suggestions about which additional flavors can be used. This page is growing so please be patient with me as I continue to add tasty and mostly healthy dishes. Enjoy trying my recipes and I hope you share them with your family and friends.
Balsamic Vinegar is actually made from grapes; which I didn’t know when I first started using it. The white balsamic is made from white or green grapes and dark or aged balsamic is made from red or purple grapes. The reason some balsamic is thicker than others is the amount of time the balsamic has been aged. Usually, the longer it is aged the thicker the balsamic becomes.
When flavors are added the balsamic can become sweeter or more savory. I suggest tasting different brands or vendors as not all vinegars, even with the same name, taste the same. You never know which one you will like the best.
Our most popular dark balsamic is Fig Balsamic Vinegar with moderately sweet taste. This is our most versatile flavor and can be used for salad, roast vegetables, sweet potatoes, fruit, or even ice cream.
Peach White Balsamic Vinegar is a favorite among our vegetarian guests. The sweet taste complements some vegetables that are little bitter like asparagus, brussels sprouts, or spinach salad.
When I needed to take away some salt and fat from my cooking I found balsamic vinegar. I quickly learned how to use balsamic for flavor instead of other less healthy options. Since then I have created countless ways to use balsamic in dressings, marinades, and to top all sorts of food.
Please note: these are very salty tasting because they are salt with additions; Not spices with a little salt added. Sea Salt is an excellent alternative to table salt because it contains more nutrients and less sodium and this helps keep the body's electrolytes in balance. You will use less because the natural flavor is more powerful. Most do not need a grinder and can be pinched onto your favorite foods.
Try using the herbed or spicy salts on rice, chicken, or beef. Lemon or lime sea salt is excellent on fish dishes or fruits. Any of the smoked sea salts will enhance the flavor of any grilled food. Read this article to learn more about the benefits of sea salt.