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Discover Dining Delights with Olive Oil from Spain

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Costillas de Cordero Con Allioli de Miel - Rack of Lamb with Honey Allioli
Allioli a la Moderna - Modern Garlic and Oil Sauce

(Family Features) - Deliver big flavors from your kitchen by using a leading chef's secret: "Elevate the flavors of any meal by using olive oil from Spain in recipes that call simply for oil," according to award-winning culinary innovator José Andrés.

"The unique flavor and smooth, vibrant taste of olive oil from Spain adds depth of flavor to any dish - savory or sweet," said Andrés, who is also chef-owner of Jaleo and six other acclaimed Washington DC restaurants and author of Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America. "Olive oil from Spain is great for sautéing, roasting or finishing dishes, but also try substituting olive oil for vegetable oil or butter when baking," he suggested.

Spain leads the world in olive oil production, pressing and distributing one million tons of olive oil every year. Cultivating more than 260 olive varieties in seven regions, Spain uses 24 types of olives for its olive oil. Experiment and discover what types of olive oil suit your tastes; there are different types suitable for different uses.

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: The strongest olive flavor of the four varieties of olive oil. Best used for drizzling, salad dressings, marinades, sauces, stews and soups.
  • Virgin Olive Oil: Shares extra virgin olive oil's strong flavor, but slightly more mild. Best used for grilling, sautéing, drizzling, salad dressings, marinades, stews and soups.
  • Olive Oil: Much milder and better suited for cooking. Best used for baking, frying, grilling and sautéing.
  • Light Olive Oil: The mildest of the four varieties. Best used for baking, frying, grilling, sautéing.

For baking, simply substitute equal amounts of olive oil for vegetable oil and follow the conversion guidelines below for substituting olive oil for butter.

1 teaspoon Butter/Margarine - 3/4 teaspoon Olive Oil from Spain

1 Tablespoon Butter/Margarine - 2 1/2 teaspoons Olive Oil from Spain

2 Tablespoons Butter/Margarine - 1 1/2 Tablespoons Olive Oil from Spain

1/4 cup Butter/Margarine - 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil from Spain

1/3 cup Butter/Margarine - 1/4 cup Olive Oil from Spain

1/2 cup Butter/Margarine - 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil from Spain

2/3 cup Butter/Margarine - 1/2 cup Olive Oil from Spain

3/4 cup Butter/Margarine - 1/2 cup + 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil from Spain

1 cup Butter/Margarine - 3/4 cup Olive Oil from Spain

Look for "Olive Oil from Spain" on the label. Some brands include Goya, Star, Pompeian and Carbonell. Or check the back of the bottle for the country of origin to ensure getting quality oil made from the world's most famous olives.

Try Chef Andrés' signature Rack of Lamb with Honey Allioli as the centerpiece of a special dinner. And enjoy olive oil from Spain every day in many ways: Check out tempting recipes, information and ideas for using Spanish olive oil at www.oliveoilfromspain.com.

Costillas de Cordero Con Allioli de Miel - Rack of Lamb with Honey Allioli

Allioli is the national sauce in Catalonia that accompanies practically any grilled meat. Catalans also have a sweet tooth, and you often find traditional recipes like codfish with honey, or meats cooked with fruits. Honey allioli is a traditional combination that goes perfectly with lamb. Even with its garlic flavor, you'll find this dish is incredibly popular with kids too.

- Chef José Andrés, author of Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America

  • 1 rack of lamb, around 1 pound
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons Spanish extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Allioli a la Moderna (recipe follows)
  • 2 tablespoons lavender honey (or other honey)
  • Salt, to taste

    1. Heat oven to 250 degrees. Using sharp knife, remove fat from lamb, so bones are clean but still attached to loin. Place lamb, bones facing down, onto roasting rack or pan. Break rosemary into a few pieces; sprinkle over lamb. Brush lamb with a little olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes, until inside of the lamb reaches 140 degrees. As you check the lamb, baste once or twice with a little oil from the pan.
    2. Meanwhile, combine Allioli and honey in a bowl; using fork to mix thoroughly.
    3. Remove lamb from oven; allow to rest for 3-4 minutes.
    4. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in large sauté pan over high heat. Place rack of lamb in the pan and sear for 10 seconds on each side to brown it.
    5. Cut rack into pieces along bones. Place a spoon of honey allioli at the bottom of each plate and top with a piece of lamb. Season with salt and serve.

Serves 4

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
Tips from Chef José Andrés: The lamb is seared at the end, not the beginning, because we want to achieve the Maillard reaction, which is what happens every time we brown meats that are rich in sugar. The downside is that it loses a lot of the juice in the process. By roasting the lamb slowly, we lose much less juice than traditional roasting at high heats. And by searing it at the end, we can also conserve more of the lamb's succulent juices.

Allioli a la Moderna - Modern Garlic and Oil Sauce

Not everyone has the time to make allioli the traditional way, by hand, even though it's worth the effort. This is the modern version, made with a hand blender, in case you're rushed. -Chef José Andrés, author of Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America

  • 1 small egg
  • 1 cup Spanish extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar or fresh lemon juice
  • Salt to taste

    1. Break egg into small mixing bowl. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, garlic and vinegar.
    2. Using a hand-held electric mixer, mix at high speed until the garlic is fully pureed into a loose paste. Then, little by little, add the remaining olive oil, continuing to blend at high speed. If mixture appears too thick, add 1 teaspoon water to loosen the sauce. Continue adding oil and blending until allioli is thick and creamy. The sauce will be a lovely yellow color. Salt to taste.

Makes 1 cup

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
Tips from Chef José Andrés: What happens if the oil and egg separate? Don't throw the sauce out. You can do two things: One is to whisk it and use it as a side sauce for fish or a vegetable. Or if you want to rescue the allioli, measure out 1 tablespoon lukewarm water and add it to the mix little by little. Blend it again until you have the creamy sauce you wanted.

SOURCE: Olive Oil from Spain

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