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Summer 2016

Sunday, 10 July 2016 17:05:20 Europe/London

Lots of delicious for your summer snacking....

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0 Comments | Posted in Oils & Olive Oils By Olives and Oil

Totally Crackers!

Wednesday, 20 January 2016 14:56:52 Europe/London

But we aren't as mad as you think!

You'd be forgiven in thinking that here at Olives and Oils, Delicatessen, that we are crackers!

In all honesty? It's almost true! The real facts of the matter are that we are so passionate about food that we try to serve you the best produce money can buy. High up on the popularity chart is of course cheese! Our question to readers therefore relates to cheese, but more so to what is the best accompaniment.......i.e. “What do you prefer to eat with your cheese board?” Crackers, other biscuits, warm crusty bread, or do you prefer your cheese plain - biscuit-less? 

Of course, there is no right nor wrong answer, as it is all a matter of taste and occasion – there are times when I prefer biscuits to accompany my cheese board and times when I prefer the crusty bread approach. In addition, it depends upon the type of cheese, the meal itself, the company, the surroundings and the timing.

If it's crackers you are after then we have a range of really interesting brands and flavours. First up are those of Peter's Yard. Artisan Crispbread, and Sodadough Crispbread. Deliciously crispy and great with hard or soft cheeses.

The for the more refined palate we have an interesting selection from The Fine Cheese Company. Natural crackers for both mild and soft cheeses, the flavoured crackers including Red Hot Chilli, Celery, and one of my favourite's, Fig! Ideally, I'd have a selection of each on the cheese board just so my guests could taste for themselves....why not have a blind tasting?

The Paxton & Whitfield brand of assorted oaties and crackers have also proved equally popular over the last festive holidays. In this range we currently stock, the Orignial Oaties, Walnut Oaties, and Celery & Sea-salt Oaties. Just to round off the shelf we also have the Paxton & Whitfield Poppy and Linseed Crackers delicious with all cheeses.

And don't forget our wonderful range of cheeses in the first place. Maybe the key to this is to choose the cheese first they the crackers to match, or you could just push the boat out and go hell for leather and try each of our flavours! And I haven't mentioned wine once!

Finally, if it is bread you prefer then check out our speciality breads or place an order with us in advance and we'll see what we can do...

Good eating....

P.S. If you want a serving tip for cheese and bread, try drizzling the bread with a little extra virgin olive oil or maybe a flavoured oil - it's not only healthy but truly delicious - check the range of flavoured oils here

 

0 Comments | Posted in General By Olives and Oil

Rainy Day Comfort Foods

Sunday, 3 January 2016 12:07:00 Europe/London

Happy New Year and a prosperous 2016 and beyond!

Here in South Wales we have been more fortunate than many in the north of England. Whilst we haven't had so much of the widespread flood devastation of Cumbria and parts of Yorkshire, we have been getting our share of rain.....as usual!

Continuous rain, grey clouds and dull days can really affect one's mood and if you are not careful it is easy to fall in to a depressive state. People handle this potentially moody time in different ways, and it's amazing what a glimpse of blue sky can do for the soul. But for many, it isn't just a blue sky that can lift the spirits. For many the one thing above all that can lift a dampening spirit is good food and drink! That involves everything about food; thumbing through cookery books to find the right recipe or working out from the fridge and larder what concoction one can create, to the food preparation, the cooking and of course sitting down with the family or even on one's own with a thick casserole, or a home made soup or something as simple as home-made pizza or pasta bake. Comfort food differs widely. It may just be a bar of chocolate, or a cup of cocoa....we are all different and our sense of comfort differs widely.

One popular food in times of low mood, is cheese. Cooked or just straight from the wrapping. Cheese fondue or oven baked within a dish or a Mont d'Or or a Camembert cooked slowly within its wooden casket, in the oven and devoured as a dip with warm crusty bread....or better still a warmed speciality bread, accompanied by a glass of beer or a wine of your choice.

For pizzas and pastas in particular a dribble of white truffle olive oil, like really finishes the dish off and gives it that unique flavour that your neighbours will envy.

What are your favourite comfort foods for rainy days? Comment below and let us know....

And don't let the rain get you down...turn to some delicious foods...

Happy cooking!

 

 

 

0 Comments | Posted in General By Olives and Oil

The Perfect Combination...

Thursday, 17 December 2015 10:23:16 Europe/London

The Goodness of Natural Foods....

When it comes to ailments, the last thing one thinks of is turning to the most natural of foods for a remedy. With the pharmaceutical industry spending billions of dollars on promotion and advertising, and trying to persuade you to buy the next best drugs for colds and flu, often we overlook the goodness of natural foods.

Two such foods that have always been known for their natural benefits are cinnamon and honey (read raw unprocessed honey here), but have you ever considered combining the two ingredients to make one concoction? In this ever changing world, a world where our self-health is attracting a greater focus, natural food specialists are slowly converting thousands of health conscious people to organic, raw, and natural foods as an alternative and successful way to combat disease and illness.

Combined, honey and cinnamon become a powerful force in the prevention of serious illness. Take a look at the previously proven benefits that follow and see if some of these are useful to you;

  • Reduces Cholesterol

  • Acts as a remedy for Cardiovascular disease

  • Assists in the treatment of chronic Arthritis

  • Fights Gallbladder infections

  • Fights Colds, Coughs and Sinus problems

  • Helps strengthen the Immune System

Of course at Olives&Oils we aren't medics when it comes to these well researched findings, but we can play our part in helping ensure that our customers continue on a healthy path. As we run up to Christmas still, our shelves are stocked up with natural raw local honey directly from the farm at Amroth, Pembrokeshire, and is available in both a set state or in loose form. As for cinnamon? See for yourself...photo above – available and all tied with festive ribbon. Now you have no excuse to to fall ill during Christmas....unless of course you ate too much!

Happy eating...

P.S. Our Christmas & New Year Opening times are as follows;

Open every Sunday 11.00 a.m. - 3.00 p.m.

Wed, 23rd Dec 07.30 a.m. - 5.30 p.m.

Thurs 24th Christmas Eve 07.30 a.m. - 1.30 p.m.

Open again as normal 29th - 31st December

Closed 1st - 4th January 2016

 

 

0 Comments | Posted in Health By Olives and Oil

Making The Most Of Christmas Leftovers

Tuesday, 15 December 2015 13:17:53 Europe/London

How about a spot of fun - try blind tasting!

The run up to Christmas is all very well. But there is always too much to do and all in such little time. At Olives&Oils Delicatessen, Mumbles we are flat out getting your orders ready, handling the shop, never ending deliveries of stock, (one or two other things in the background that you don't get to see) and of course coping with bringing up a family, whose excitement overflows beyond all description at this time of the year.

How about a spot of fun - try blind tasting!

The run up to Christmas is all very well. But there is always too much to do and all in such little time. At Olives&Oils Delicatessen, Mumbles we are flat out getting your orders ready, handling the shop, never ending deliveries of stock, (one or two other things in the background that you don't get to see) and of course coping with bringing up a family, whose excitement overflows beyond all description at this time of the year.

I dare say, we'll be glad when the big day has finally past and we can turn to enjoying the moment and finding time to relax over a table of fabulous food. For me, one of the best dining experiences is not the Christmas dinner itself, but the unrivalled experience of tucking into cold meats, poultry, cheeses, and vegetable leftovers on Boxing Day.

It's really strange don't you think? We could indeed recreate the 'leftovers' experience on any day of the year with the right amount of planning, but it never feels the same as it does on Boxing Day. Nothing quite tastes as good as cold meats and warm vegetable bubble and squeak followed by a platter of cheeses and copious amounts of wine, the day after Christmas dinner, even if you've stuffed yourself the day before. The leftovers however wouldn't taste the same without a good selection of chutneys and preserves. A small spoonful from each jar, differing in flavour, to test what goes with what and which is the preferred taste for the meats, the poultry, the vegetables and the cheeses. Even the same chutney accompaniment can taste very differently depending upon the 'match' of food. I guess we all like to experiment individually (sometimes secretly). The secret sommelier of chutneys. And whilst we are on the subject of sommeliers...

For the carnivores there is a similar experience taking place over mustards. Yes, there is such thing now as a 'Mustard Sommelier' – a variety of different mustards to accompany meats, poultry and other dishes. Like what you ask? Pizzas, fish, vegetables, cheeses and so much more especially in cooking....you'll be surprised what else you can do with mustard!

All this partaking of chutneys, preserves and mustards does not however just happen by magic. One needs to pre-plan the larder (oh yes, the old fashioned traditional larder is making a comeback!) before Christmas – and that means now! We aren't suggesting that you throw out your usual brands, but we are suggesting that at Christmas especially you may like to experiment and delve through our shelves to try one of our many unusual flavours. Such as our Olives&Oils deli range of Nicolas Vahé mustards, Garlic & Lemon or Fig & Balsamic, Thai Spice & Mango or Curry & Coconut mustards....and there others available within the range. Or you could try one of our range of Nicolas Vahé preserves such as White Wine & Pear, Fig & Walnut, Apple & Rosemary or Apricot & Garlic amongst others...

Which ever you prefer it makes for an interesting and exciting time to be settling down with the family, and doing some tasting- why not make it even more interesting and cover the labels with silver foil and do some blind tasting? After all, Christmas is to be enjoyed.

Have fun, and happy eating.

Olives&Oils

 

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I dare say, we'll be glad when the big day has finally past and we can turn to enjoying the moment and finding time to relax over a table of fabulous food. For me, one of the best dining experiences is not the Christmas dinner itself, but the unrivalled experience of tucking into cold meats, poultry, cheeses, and vegetable leftovers on Boxing Day.

It's really strange don't you think? We could indeed recreate the 'leftovers' experience on any day of the year with the right amount of planning, but it never feels the same as it does on Boxing Day. Nothing quite tastes as good as cold meats and warm vegetable bubble and squeak followed by a platter of cheeses and copious amounts of wine, the day after Christmas dinner, even if you've stuffed yourself the day before. The leftovers however wouldn't taste the same without a good selection of chutneys and preserves. A small spoonful from each jar, differing in flavour, to test what goes with what and which is the preferred taste for the meats, the poultry, the vegetables and the cheeses. Even the same chutney accompaniment can taste very differently depending upon the 'match' of food. I guess we all like to experiment individually (sometimes secretly). The secret sommelier of chutneys. And whilst we are on the subject of sommeliers...

For the carnivores there is a similar experience taking place over mustards. Yes, there is such thing now as a 'Mustard Sommelier' – a variety of different mustards to accompany meats, poultry and other dishes. Like what you ask? Pizzas, fish, vegetables, cheeses and so much more especially in cooking....you'll be surprised what else you can do with mustard!

All this partaking of chutneys, preserves and mustards does not however just happen by magic. One needs to pre-plan the larder (oh yes, the old fashioned traditional larder is making a comeback!) before Christmas – and that means now! We aren't suggesting that you throw out your usual brands, but we are suggesting that at Christmas especially you may like to experiment and delve through our shelves to try one of our many unusual flavours. Such as our Olives&Oils deli range of Nicolas Vahé mustards, Garlic & Lemon or Fig & Balsamic, Thai Spice & Mango or Curry & Coconut mustards....and there others available within the range. Or you could try one of our range of Nicolas Vahé preserves such as White Wine & Pear, Fig & Walnut, Apple & Rosemary or Apricot & Garlic amongst others...

Which ever you prefer it makes for an interesting and exciting time to be settling down with the family, and doing some tasting- why not make it even more interesting and cover the labels with silver foil and do some blind tasting? After all, Christmas is to be enjoyed.

Have fun, and happy eating.

Olives&Oils

 

0 Comments | Posted in Nicolas Vahé By Olives and Oil

7 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Buy Your Olive Oil From Supermarkets

Sunday, 13 December 2015 11:36:46 Europe/London

Olive Oil - A Healthy Alternative To Getting Fat This Christmas!

From early November through to mid December it's olive harvest time in France, Italy, Greece and Spain in particular. Of course much of the work at the bigger olive producers is done mechanically, although you can still find small-holdings picking from their hundred year old trees, up a rickety ladder, by hand. You can even partake in Olive harvest holidays if you wish, whereby producers put a few smaller trees aside to be picked by willing hands, and then following the whole process through to olive oil production, and of course consumption.

In November 2015 however, it was widely reported that no less than 7 Italian brands of the more famous names, including Bertolli, Santa Sabina, Primadonna, Sasso, Coricelli, Antica Badia and Carapelli have been, allegedly, fraudulently passing off lower grade Olive Oil as Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and on selling it to the supermarkets Europe wide, including the UK. Some 7,000 tonnes of oil valued at millions of euros, were seized by investigators. This isn't the first time that Italy has been found to be involved in fraudulent activity within the olive oil industry. In 2012 an investigation discovered that Italian producers were buying in cheap varieties of oil from Spain, Morocco and Tunisia, in some cases blending it and then selling it on as Italian produce.

Olives and Oils has a different approach to stocking olive oils. Here, we need to be totally convinced that the olive oil we stock is genuine and comes from a genuine source, even if it means jumping on a plane and visiting the producer. There are some brilliant oils available and we stock a range of not only award winning Extra Virgin Olive Oils, such as La Lieutenante but also flavoured oils such as White Truffle Olive Oil, Pistachio Oil, Hazelnut Oil, Walnut Oil and more.

Whilst it is perfectly acceptable to cook with Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), and we often do, we prefer to consume our EVOO neat as a generous drizzle on salad foods and yes, even on bread, as done by the Spanish and Italians.

In Italy Bruchetta, Crostini and Crostoni are rustic breads toasted on an open grill with olive oil drizzled over, then topped with a variety of different succulent ingredients. Better to use EVOO for a tastier flavour, and don't be stingy with the topping! Tostadas are similar in Spain using a baguette bread and are generally eaten for breakfast with grated tomato or a variety of other toppings.

Naturally one can pour EVOO on salads and other summery dishes, and at this time of the year when the skies are grey a good light salad with EVOO can transport you back to your last Mediterranean holiday or spur you into action to booking your next one! Of course olive oil is proven to be healthier hence the Spanish and Italians rarely (usually never) use butter on their bread....it's a thought at Christmas time when you have enough trouble fighting off the excess festive food!

As for flavoured oils, they give a whole new meaning to salads, pastas, and pizzas... never tried it Go on, give it a try! You won't be disappointed and all your friends will be equally surprised at your resourcefulness. Just remember to tell them you got the oils at Olives and Oils in Mumbles.

Happy eating...

P.S. Don't forget to tell your friends about this Olives and Oils Blog and about the online shop at www.olivesandoils.co.uk 

0 Comments | Posted in Oils & Olive Oils By Olives and Oil

Panettone....Everyone's New Favourite At Christmas!

Wednesday, 9 December 2015 13:20:28 Europe/London

A Change in Christmas Tradition?

I'm beginning to think that the old traditional typically British rich fruit cake, covered with a layer of marzipan and then coated generously with a pure white frosty icing, and decorated with a colourful Santa and mini-silver balls that we all associate so much with Christmas may be on the wane. In its place we have noticed an increasing demand for a lighter, taller (frostless) cake of Italian decent.

 

Panattone originated in Milan, north Italy, and it usually prepared and enjoyed at Christmas and New Year, by people from Italy (naturally), south east France, Spain, South America, alongside Albania, Germany and Switzerland. Now its popularity has spread even further to the UK, USA, Canada and Australia. Panettone is officially described as a type of sweet bread loaf, but its light consistency is in complete contrast to the traditional Christmas cake usually devoured in the UK.

 What will however come as a big surprise to many who are already familiar with the bread loaf of fruit and peel is that Panettone is available in a wide variety of flavours....including some you'd never have considered!

Of course it will come as no surprise to discover a Chocolate flavoured Panettone but did you know that here at Olives and Oils we currently stock three other flavours in addition to the traditional....those flavours are Chestnut, Fig, and Prosecco Cream!! We can pretty much guarantee that these aren't going to remain on the shelves for long so if you are a serious connoisseur of the traditional Panettone, you are going to love these unusual flavours, and you'd better call in soon!

Apart from keeping them all to yourself, these Panettones make great Christmas gifts and no-one ever seems disappointed to receive such from family and friends. Indeed, one close friend of ours tells us that his 91 year old father is stock piling them for the festive holidays! So much so that he is reluctant to allow the family to make the best bread and butter pudding ever with slices of the bread loaf!

Which brings us on to our first video blog recipe. Have you ever tried Bread & Butter Pudding made with Panettone? We prefer the Panettone and Butter Pudding of Gino D'Acampo....why? Well he is Italian so he should know, but more so, he laces it with Amaretto...what could be better? Anyway, why not give it a go and tell us how you fared...here goes:

 

Amaretto, Panettone Butter Pudding - Sounds and looks delicious don't you think?

Happy eating!

P. S. DON'T BE DISAPPOINTED: All orders for Christmas foods and produce have to be in by this Monday14th December 2015 so don't hesitate in ordering your Christmas Hampers, cheeses and other produce from Olives and Oils, by that aforementioned date! 

0 Comments | Posted in Hampers & Gifts By Olives and Oil

It Just Isn't Christmas Without A Christmas Hamper....

Tuesday, 8 December 2015 11:18:59 Europe/London

Christmas 2015....

Of course we are rather biased as food is 'our thing' but for us here at Olives and Oils, Delicatessen in Mumbles, Christmas just wouldn't be Christmas without being able to tuck into a mystical Christmas Hamper. It's okay for you because you don't have to make them up, you just need to order, receive and eat, (or give them away as gifts) but we find there is nothing more enjoyable than rifling through a wicker basket exploring the festive goodies and working out which of the luxurious products you'll use throughout the remainder of the festive holiday.

It seems that we aren't alone in our passion for Christmas Hampers. Did you know that in December 2014 alone there were 16 million searches on Google for 'Christmas Hampers'? It's a staggering number don't you think? So what makes Christmas Hampers so very special?

We are told by many of our customers that to them, 'Christmas Hampers offer a mystical excitement, tinted with a delicious luxury'. Hampers that originate from delicatessens in particular generally contain an array of products that one would never find in a supermarket. Most are from local producers or luxurious imports from other countries and would usually be difficult to source. Some would even have products that you once saw on holiday abroad, or remind you of happy days dining next to the Mediterranean. As for the local produce, much never makes the supermarkets and can only be found at street markets or in local small independent delicatessens. Of course, the added bonus is that you can re-use the fabulous wicker basket, for picnics or for storage/display!

At Olives and Oils we have a range of hampers to suit all pockets. Gift boxes start at £21.95 and increase steadily. You will see from the image above that our range includes a mouthwatering Italian hamper, a stylish Spanish hamper, a sinful Cheese hamper through to festive and fully fledged Christmas hampers.

We are taking orders up to and including 14th December 2015 so don't hesitate in ordering your Christmas Hamper from Olives and Oils, this year! ORDER NOW!

0 Comments | Posted in Hampers & Gifts By Olives and Oil

Countdown to Christmas

Saturday, 5 December 2015 15:55:44 Europe/London

 

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0 Comments | Posted in Nicolas Vahé By Olives and Oil

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