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Baked Goods

Breakfast | Baked Goods | Dressings & Marinades | Main Dishes | Side Dishes | Miscellaneous

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Vegan Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

These vegan oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are so can't eat just one! They have the moistness of banana bread, and they satisfy any craving for an oatmeal cookie (not to mention chocolate too!).


  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/3 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 2 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil (mild)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the oats, almond meal, shredded coconut, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients...bananas, applesauce, vanilla extract, and extra virgin olive oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips. With a small ice cream scooper or teaspoon, scoop about 2-3 teaspoons of cookie "dough" onto prepared baking sheet, place about an inch apart. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove and enjoy! Makes about 3 dozen small cookies.

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Tuscan Herb Bread


  • 1 1/8 cups warm water
  • 2 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Seasonello aromatic herbal salt (available at Adoro)
  • 2 tablespoons Tuscan Herb Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup Asiago or Parmigiano Reggiano, grated


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine warm water, yeast and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Let rest until foamy (about 10 minutes). Add Seasonello and Tuscan Herb Extra Virgin Olive Oil to yeast mixture and stir until salt is dissolved. Mix in flour 1 cup at a time until a sticky dough forms. Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (add more flour as needed). Form dough into a ball and brush the surface with Tuscan Herb Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Return to mixing bowl, cover bowl with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel and let rest in a warm, draft-free area until double in size (about an hour). Punch dough down, knead a few more times, and form into either 1 large loaf or 2 smaller loaves (baguette style). Place loaves on a lightly oiled baking sheet, score tops, and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let rest until almost double in size (about 20 minutes).  Top loaves with grated Asiago or Parmigiano Reggiano. Bake 25-30 minutes or until top is golden brown.  Brush top of bread lightly with Tuscan Herb Extra Virgin Olive Oil and cool on rack.

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Banana Bread

In a large bowl whisk together thoroughly:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional) 
  • In a separate bowl blend together
  • 6 tablespoons Butter flavored olive oil
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Fold in until combined:

  • 1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (about 2)
  • 1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)


Preheat the oven to 350°.  Thoroughly grease a standard loaf pan with one teaspoon of Butter flavored Olive Oil. Combine the wet ingredients in the bowl with the dry ingredients until just incorporated - do not over mix.  Scrape the batter into a pan and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes before unmolding to cool completely on the rack.

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Lemon Rosemary Olive Oil Cake

The dessert is refreshing and lovely with a cup of tea or coffee

  • Cooking Spray
  • 2 Tbsp. all purpose flour + 13.5 oz. additional (about 3 cups)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup Lemon Olive Oil
  • 1/2 cup fat-free milk
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon rind
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. lemon extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • Fresh rosemary sprig (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 10-inch tube pan with cooking spray. Dust with 2 tablespoons flour. Weigh or lightly spoon 13.5 ounces flour into dry measuring cups. Level with a knife. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Place granulated sugar and next 7 ingredients in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at low speed 2 minutes or until smooth. Add to flour mixture, beat until blended. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pan and cool for 15 minutes on wire rack. Combine powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon juice, stirring until smooth. Drizzle sugar mixture over cake. Garnish with rosemary sprig if desired.

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Tuscan Herbed Foccacia

  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1⁄2 cups warm water (105° to 115°F)
  • 1⁄2 cup Tuscan Herb olive oil, plus more for greasing
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp. table salt
  • 4 to 4 1⁄4 cups bread flour, plus more as needed
  • 1⁄2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • coarse sea salt for sprinkling

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, sprinkle the yeast and a pinch of the sugar over 1/2 cup of the water and stir to dissolve. Let stand at room temperature until foamy, about 10 minutes.

Add the remaining 1 cup water and the remaining sugar, 1/4 cup of the olive oil, the table salt and 1 cup of the flour. Beat on medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Add 1 cup of the flour, reduce the speed to medium-low and beat for 2 minutes. Stir in the onion.

Switch to the dough hook. On low speed, beat in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft, shaggy dough forms that starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Knead on low speed, adding flour 1 Tbs. at a time if the dough sticks, until moist, soft and slightly sticky, about 6 minutes. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for 20 minutes.

Line a heavy rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and brush the paper lightly with olive oil. Turn the dough out onto the prepared sheet. With oiled fingers, press and flatten the dough into an oval 1 inch thick. Cover loosely with oiled plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. It will be at least 2 inches thick.

With your fingertips, make deep indentations 1 inch apart all over the surface of the dough, almost to the bottom of the pan. Drizzle with the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Place a baking stone on the bottom rack of an oven and preheat to 425°F.

Sprinkle the bread lightly with coarse salt. Place the pan on the stone and bake until the bread is lightly browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Check the bottom and, if the bread is pale, bake for a few minutes more. Slide the bread onto a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature, cut into squares or wedges.

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Blood Orange Chocolate Cake

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix, any brand is acceptable
  • 1 container chocolate frosting
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup Blood Orange Olive

Preheat oven to 350° degrees. Grease and flour 12-cup Bundt pan.

1. Set pan aside.
2. Mix all ingredients in large mixing bowl.
3. Mix 3 minutes with electric mixer, batter should be thick and well combined.
4. Pour batter into Bundt pan and bake for 48-52 minutes.
5. Cool cake on rack for 20 minutes before removing from pan.
6. Cool cake completely before icing.

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Pumpkin/Meyer Lemon Loaf

1 ½ cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
½ cup meyer lemon olive oil (or mild evoo)
2 eggs beaten with ¼ cup water
¼ teaspoon each ground nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice

Preheat the oven to 350°F
In a large bowl, stir together the pumpkin, oil, eggs/water mixture and spices. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and stir until combined. Pour into a greased 9”x5”x3” loaf pan.
Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until a tester inserted into the centre of the loaf, comes out clean.
Turn loaf onto a rack and let cool completely.
Makes 1 loaf.

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Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 large eggs
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1½ cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch pans. Preheat oven to 350° F.

Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.

Beat eggs, olive oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and beat well. Stir in zucchini and nuts (if using) until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pans.

Bake on the center rack for 45 minutes, or until tester inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove bread from pan and completely cool.

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Blueberry & Fresh Lemon Olive Oil Gelato

2 cups fresh blueberries
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
6 egg yolks
1¼ cups sugar
⅔ cup Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
¼ teaspoon salt

For the Blueberry Puree:

Combine the blueberries, ¼ cup of sugar and lemon zest together in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally, being mindful that the pot does not boil over or burn.

Keep the berries on medium heat until they release their juices and the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and strain, pressing the skins to release all the juices. Add the lemon juice and stir to combine. Once the mixture has cooled to room temperature, place in a sealed bowl to chill for least two hours.

For the Gelato Custard Base:

In a saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the milk, cream and salt. Cook until bubbles form around the edges of the pan. Whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale yellow, for about five minutes. Drizzle in the olive oil and beat until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.

Slowly add 2 cups of the hot milk mixture, ¼ cup at a time, beating until combined. Pour the yolk mixture back into the saucepan, whisking constantly. Place the pan over medium-low heat and cook, continuously whisking, until the mixture coats the back of a spoon or until it reaches 175°F.

Strain the custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Place the bowl in a larger one, partially filled with ice water, and cool the custard to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, about 2 hours.

Add the chilled blueberry puree to the custard and stir to combine. Place the mixture in to the ice cream maker and process according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the gelato to a chilled container, cover and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours, before serving.

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Almost Flourless Dark Chocolate Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake with Vanilla Bean Candied Kumquats

8 servings

Cake Ingredients:
7 ounces 70‰ dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
½ cup Blood Orange extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup granulated cane sugar, divided
5 large eggs at room temperature, separated
2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
Cocoa powder for dusting
whipped cream for serving (optional)

Vanilla Bean Candied Kumquats Ingredients:
2 cups fresh kumquats sliced in half lengthwise, seeds removed
2 cups granulated cane sugar
2 cups water
1 vanilla bean sliced open lengthwise

Directions For The Candied Kumquats:
In a heavy three-four quart saucepan, dissolve the sugar in to the water. Slowly bring to a simmer over medium low heat. Add the sliced kumquats and lower the heat. Bring to a gentle simmer being very mindful that the sugar syrup does not foam up and overflow.

Cook at a gentle simmer for 30 minutes. Add the vanilla bean and cook for an additional 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. Strain the syrup, discarding the vanilla bean, and place back in to the saucepan.

Reduce the syrup to one cup over medium-low heat.

Cool syrup reduction and pour over candied kumquats.

Directions For The Cake:
Preheat the oven to 350°F with the rack positioned in the middle.

Line the bottom of a 9-by-3-inch round cake pan with parchment paper.

Put the chocolate in a large stainless-steel bowl and melt it over simmering water. Whisk it until it is smooth.

Add the olive oil, whisking in a steady stream.

Whisk in ⅔ cup of the sugar, the egg yolks, then the flour and salt.

Put the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium speed with the whisk attachment until they start to foam.

Add about a third of the remaining ⅓ cup of sugar. Beat until the whites become opaque, then add another third of the sugar. When the whites begin to increase in volume and become firmer, add the rest of the sugar and turn the mixer speed to high. Beat until the whites form soft peaks when the whisk is lifted from the bowl. They will still look slightly wet.

Fold the whites into the chocolate mixture in two additions. Pour the batter into the pan and bake until the cake is puffed and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean or with only a few crumbs clinging to it, 35 to 40 minutes.

Let the cake cool completely, still in the pan, on a rack. It will deflate as it cools. Run a table knife around the edge of the pan and invert the cake onto a serving plate. Peel off the parchment paper. Lightly dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar. Serve at room temperature, with a spoonful of candied kumquats and reduced syrup and or a dollop of whipped cream if desired.

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Olive Oil & Spiced Butternut Squash Bundt Cake With Bourbon Vanilla Glaze

For the cake:
1½ cups white sugar
1 cup sweet, delicate extra virgin olive oil such as manzanillo, sweet barnea or late arbequina
1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract
2 cups cooked, pureed butternut squash or canned pumpkin
4 eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

For the glaze:
2 cups powdered sugar
¼ cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon bourbon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Grease and flour a 10 cup bundt pan or 12 x 18 inch pan.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger and cinnamon. Set aside.

In a large bowl combine sugar and oil. Blend in vanilla and butternut squash or pumpkin, then beat in eggs one at a time. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in nuts. Spread batter into prepared 12x18 inch pan.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

While the cake is baking, whisk together all the ingredients for the glaze until smooth and lump free. Allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes and then invert it on to a serving plate. While the cake is still warm, drizzle the glaze over the cake evenly.

Serve at room temperature.

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Almost Flourless Tangerine Balsamic & Blood Orange Agrumato Dark Chocolate Brownie

Makes about 24 brownies

For the cake:
1 stick (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter
4 Tbs. + 1 tsp. blood orange fused extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
6 oz. 60%+ dark chocolate, chopped
½ cup cocoa powder
2 cups granulated sugar
2 Tbs. Tangerine Balsamic Vinegar
½ tsp. kosher salt
5 large eggs, whisked
¼ cup all purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Using a teaspoon of the blood orange extra virgin olive oil, grease a 9 x 13" baking pan. Line the pan with a strip of parchment, cut to overhang the long sides of the pan.

In a large bowl set over a double boiler, slowly melt the butter with the dark chocolate. Stir constantly until completely melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the blood orange fused extra virgin olive oil, eggs, tangerine balsamic, orange zest and sugar. Mix until well combined. Whisk together the flour and cocoa powder and add to the wet ingredients. Fold until there are no visible dry spots.

Scrape the batter in to the prepared baking pan. Bake on the center rack of the oven for approximately 30 minutes or until a tester inserted in the center comes out with very moist crumbs adhering. Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes and then lift out using the parchment and cool completely before cutting.

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Aged White Cranberry-Pear Balsamic Condimento Gelee with Fruit

No sugar added. No artificial flavor. No additives, preservatives, chemicals or synthetic anything. Clean, naturally sweet-tart, aged, pro-biotic, balsamic condimento gets to strut its stuff in this application. The fruit is merely the supporting cast.

2 cups Aged White Cranberry-Pear Balsamic Condimento + ¼ cup reserved
2 tablespoons unflavored gelatin
1 cup cut up fresh fruit or small berries such bananas, blueberries, lychee, strawberries, raspberries, oranges kiwi etc.
1 teaspoon blood orange extra virgin olive oil for greasing the molds

Using the blood orange extra virgin olive oil, grease one large 2 quart, heat resistant casserole/bowl/mold or up to six smaller 6 oz. ramekins, bowls or molds.

Arrange the cut up fruit in the mold/s.

In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over ¼ cup of balsamic condimento and allow to sit undisturbed. In a two quart sauce pan over medium heat, bring the remaining balsamic to a simmer.

Remove from heat and add the bloomed gelatin. Stir constantly until no granules or sign of gelatin can be seen, and the mixture is completely clear.

Pour the warm mixture in to the prepared molds and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or until set.

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White Chocolate & Persian Lime Olive Oil Fudge

¼ cup Persian Lime Olive Oil
¼ cup unsalted butter
¾ cup Sour Cream
2 cups miniature marshmallows
½ lb white chocolate morsels
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
finely grated zest of two limes, about 1 tablespoon
1 cup granulated sugar

Grease an 8" x 8" square baking pan.

Combine sugar, lime zest, Delizia Persian Lime Extra Virgin Olive Oil, lime juice, butter and sour cream in a 2 quart saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes or until sugar is dissolved and mixture boils, stirring constantly.

Continue boiling over medium heat or until a candy thermometer reaches 238 degrees.

Remove from heat, stir marshmallows and white chocolate until melted and mixture is smooth. Immediately pour fudge into greased pan and let stand about 10 minutes until top is firm to touch. Using a knife, score top of fudge to make fudge squares. Refrigerate about 1 hour. When cool and firm, cut out fudge.

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Decadent Chocolate & Aged Espresso Balsamic Fudge

Makes about 3 pounds of fudge.

10 oz. Heavy Cream
4 oz. Aged Espresso Balsamic
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 Tbs. unsalted butter cut in to small pieces
¼ tsp. sea salt
½ tsp. vanilla extract

Butter a 9x13" baking pan and line with parchment that overhangs the sides.

In a metal bowl or double boiler, add all of the ingredients except the salt. Set over a pot of gently simmering water, stirring constantly until the chocolate has completely melted. The mixture will be very thick. Pour in to the prepared pan.

Allow to cool to room temperature and cut in to squares.

Sprinkle a few grains of sea salt on each square.

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Cranberry-Orange Olive Oil Cake

1 ½ cups + 1 Tbsp. fresh squeezed orange juice (about 4-5 large navel oranges)
1 Tbsp. finely grated orange zest
3½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1¾ teaspoons kosher salt
5 large eggs
3 cups granulated sugar
1½ cups + 1 Tbsp. Blood Orange Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
½ cup dried cranberries
1 cup confectioners sugar

Position a rack in the middle of the oven, remove any racks above, and crank up the heat to 350°F.

Coat a 12-cup bundt or tube pan with 1 tbsp. blood orange extra virgin olive oil and set aside.

Finely grate the zest of 2 oranges, then squeeze 4 of them. You should have 1½ cups and 1 reserved tablespoon of orange juice; if not, squeeze the 5th orange. Set aside.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand held mixer in a large bowl, beat the eggs on medium-high speed until well combined, about 1 minute. Slowly pour in the granulated sugar and continue beating until thick and pale yellow, about 3 minutes. On low speed, alternate adding the flour mixture and blood orange extra virgin olive oil, starting and ending with the flour, and beat until just a few wisps of flour remain. Pour in the orange juice, zest and dried cranberries and whirl for a few seconds to bring the batter together.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a cake tester comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it, about 1¼ hours. If the top is browning too much as the cake bakes, cover lightly with foil. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 15 minutes and then turn the cake out on to a rack over a sheet pan. Mix together 1 tablespoon reserved orange juice with confectioners sugar to form a glaze. Pour slowly and evenly over the warm cake.

Serve at room temperature.

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Dark Chocolate Balsamic Tiramisu

6 egg yolks
4 tablespoons sugar
1 pound mascarpone (at room temperature)
1 ¾ cups cooled, espresso
3 tablespoons Aged Dark Chocolate Balsamic
24 ladyfingers
⅓ cup bittersweet chocolate shavings

Using a stand mixer with whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar until thick, about 5 minutes. Add room temperature mascarpone to the egg yolks and beat until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon of espresso and one tablespoon of balsamic and mix until thoroughly combined.

In a shallow bowl, mix the remaining espresso and Dark Chocolate Balsamic. Briefly dip each ladyfinger into espresso mixture. Allowing the ladyfingers soak too long will cause them to fall apart.

Place the ladyfingers on the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking dish, breaking them in half if necessary in order to fit the bottom.

Evenly spread ½ of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers. Arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to six. Before serving, sprinkle the top with chocolate shavings.

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Rich Buttery Whole Wheat Extra Virgin Olive Oil Banana Bread

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Thoroughly grease a standard loaf pan with one teaspoon of All Natural Butter Flavoured Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

In a large bowl whisk together thoroughly:
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

In a separate bowl blend together
6 tablespoons All Natural Butter flavoured extra virgin olive oil
⅔ cup sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Fold in until combined:
1 cup mashed very ripe bananas (about 2)
½ cup toasted chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Combine the wet ingredients in the bowl with the dry ingredients until just incorporated - do not over mix. Scrape the batter into a pan and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a rack for 5 to 10 minutes before unmolding to cool completely on the rack.

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Dark Chocolate & Aged Vanilla Balsamic Truffles

1 pound quality dark chocolate, chopped (Cocoa 56%+)
8 oz. heavy whipping cream
2 tbs. Delizia Aged Vanilla Balsamic
⅓ cup good quality cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon salt

Place chopped chocolate in a wide, heatproof bowl; (I place mine in my stand-mixer bowl. This way I can melt the chocolate and then whip it, using only one bowl.)

In a heavy bottom pan, bring the heavy cream and salt to a boil. Turn down the heat and let the cream simmer for a full minute. Stir often, making sure the cream does not burn.

Immediately take the cream from the heat and pour evenly over the chopped chocolate. Resist the temptation to stir. Allow to sit for 2-4 minutes in order to melt the chocolate.

When the chocolate has melted, stir the ingredients together with a heatproof rubber spatula. Use the spatula to stir any larger pieces of chocolate in to the warm cream to dissolve.

You should end up with a smooth, glossy mixture referred to as ganache. Add the Vanilla Balsamic to the ganache and mix thoroughly. The ganache will thicken as it cools and when it reached room temperature, can be piped. To make traditional truffles, pipe small portions ( approximately 2 tsp.) of ganache on to parchment paper or another non-stick surface. These portions will continue to cool and solidify and can then be rolled in to small balls. Dredged the balls in to cocoa powder. If used while warm, the ganache can be poured over cakes or used to dip fruit.

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Whole Grain Lemon-Blueberry Tea Cake

Makes 18 standard size muffins or one dozen muffins and one large or two miniature loaf pans.

2 cups white whole wheat flour
2 cups ground whole grain corn meal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole milk
2 large eggs
½ cup whole milk yogurt
½ cup honey
½ cup whole fruit fused lemon extra virgin olive oil
fresh grated zest from one lemon
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease or line muffin cups or miniature loaf pans.

In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl mix the wet ingredients and lemon zest. In three separate additions, add the wet ingredients to the dry, scraping down the bowl. Gently fold in the berries. Fill the muffin cups or loaf pans half way with batter. Bake in the center of oven for 20-25 minutes until a tester inserted in to the middle comes out clean.

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Spiced Pumpkin-EVOO Cupcakes with Cinnamon-Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Makes 36 standard cupcakes or 12 giant cupcakes

The Cupcakes
2 ⅔ cups all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
1 15 oz. can solid pack pumpkin (1 ¾ cups)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 cup sweet extra virgin olive oil such as Arbequina
4 large eggs

Cinnamon-Vanilla Buttercream
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large egg whites
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ tsp. salt
3 sticks unsalted butter cut in to ½ inch cubes and brought to (room temperature!)

For Cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line three standard muffin tins or one giant muffin tin with cupcake papers. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. In a separate large bowl, combine the pumpkin, sugars and extra virgin olive oil. Add the eggs one at a time beating after each addition.

Add the flour in three additions to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined and no flour can be seen. Fill the muffin tins and bake the cupcakes for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in to the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

For Cinnamon-Vanilla Buttercream:
Put the sugar, egg whites and salt in to a metal mixing bowl. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and stir constantly with a whisk until the mixture feels very warm to the touch (about 3-4 minutes). Remove the bowl from the heat. Working with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer, beat the meringue on medium speed until it reaches room temperature (about 5 minutes). Add the butter cubes one at a time to beating after each addition until smooth. Once all the butter in incorporated, add the cinnamon and vanilla beating until fully incorporated. Allow the cupcakes to cool before frosting.

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French Beignets With Aged Blackberry-Ginger Balsamic Reduction

Makes around two dozen

For Beignet:
½ cup boiling water
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
¼ cup sugar
½ tsp. salt
⅓ whole milk
½ pkg. yeast
¼ cup warm water
2 eggs, beaten
3¾ cups sifted flour
Powdered sugar, for dusting

For The Aged Blackberry-Ginger Balsamic Reduction:
1 cup Aged Blackberry-Ginger Balsamic

For Beignet: Pour boiling water over butter, sugar and salt. Add milk. Let stand until warm. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add to milk mixture with the beaten egg. Stir in 2 cups flour. Beat. Add enough flour to make a soft dough. Cover with waxed paper and a cloth; chill until ready to use. Roll dough to ¼ inch thickness. Do not let dough rise before frying. Cut into squares and fry a few at a time in deep hot fat at 360°F. Brown; turn and brown on other side. Drain; sprinkle with powdered sugar.

For The Aged Blackberry-Ginger Balsamic Reduction:
In a medium saucepan over low heat, slowly reduce the balsamic vinegar by 50%. You should have ½ cup. Allow to cool to room temperature which will thicken it further.

Serve with warm beignets.

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Malbec Wine & Aged Vanilla Balsamic Poached Baby Asian Pears

This is a lovely way to preserve and enjoy the bounty of the season.

1½ cups Malbec or red wine
1½ pounds small Asian pears, Bosc pears, persimmons or apples, peeled, cored and quartered
1 cup water
½ cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick
1 whole star anise
1 cup Aged Vanilla balsamic
2" strip of orange zest

Peel, stem and quarter the fruit.

Add all ingredients to a heavy, large pot.

Simmer on over low heat until the fruit is tender and the wine mixture has reduced by half.

Serve the fruit and its' syrup over ice cream, puddings, pancakes, oatmeal, yogurt or enjoy them by themselves.

This makes a great gift to jar and give away.

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Fresh Kiwi & Whole Fruit Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil Sorbet

Makes 6 1/2 cups of sorbet or approximately 12 servings.

Kiwis are packed full of nutrition and antioxidants. I think it's fair to call kiwis a super food. If you take them from a fresh state and freeze them with minimal processing, you can preserve this nutrition indefinitely. Add the poly-phenols, creamy mouth feel, and a delicate citrus blush from whole fruit lemon extra virgin olive oil to the mix, and you have a frozen treat of unrivaled nutrition and flavor.

6 cups fresh peeled, chopped ripe kiwis, semi-soft and very sweet
¼ cup agave nectar, honey or granulated sugar (optional)
¼ cup Whole Fruit Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Put the peeled chopped kiwis in the freezer ½ hour before pureeing them. Put the chilled kiwis in to a blender along with the sweetener of choice, if using. Blend to a puree. With the motor running, pour in the olive oil to somewhat emulsify and pour the entire mixture in to the bowl of your ice cream machine. If necessary, based on your ice cream maker's instructions, chill the bowl ahead of time. My ice cream maker has a built in compressor so I typically skip this step. Chill and enjoy!

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Jewish Challah Bread

The aroma of this bread baking is sheer luxury and the lack of butter will hardly be missed.

1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
4 large eggs
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

In a large mixing bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, stir yeast into water to soften for five minutes. Add three eggs, sugar, oil and salt and beat lightly. Add flour in small increments, continuing to mix, until you have a smooth, moist, elastic dough.

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and knead by hand for five more minutes.

Put the dough into a large bowl oiled with extra virgin olive oil, turning once to coat the entire ball of dough with oil. Cover and let rise until doubled, for about an hour.

Turn dough out onto a lightly oiled work surface. Divide into thirds. Shape each third into a rope about 20 inches long. Lay the ropes side by side on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Braid the ropes, tucking both ends under the loaf.

Cover and let rise in a warm area for 45 minutes.

Beat the reserved egg with a tablespoon of cold water to make an egg glaze. Brush the glaze lightly over the braid.

Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 40-45 minutes, checking with an instant read thermometer for an internal temperature of 190°F.

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Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Yields 3 dozen cookies

1 1/4 cups unsalted butter
1/4 cup Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2/3 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon lest
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons white sugar for decoration

In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and 2/3 cup of sugar until light and fluffy. Drizzle lemon evoo till fully mixed. Stir in the flour salt and lemon zest until well blended. The dough will be somewhat soft. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees F). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into rectangles 1 1/2×2 inches in size. Place cookies 1 inch apart on the lined cookie sheets. Sprinkle the remaining sugar over the tops.

Bake for 8 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden at the edges. Cool on wire racks, and store in an airtight container at room temperature.

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Raspberry Lime Pie

1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup Persian Lime Olive Oil
2 tablespoon Raspberry Balsamic
1 (8 ounce) container Cool Whip
1 cup fresh raspberries
9 inch graham cracker pie crust

In a bowl, combine milk and lime olive oil and raspberry balsamic, mix well. Mixture should thicken. Fold in cool whip and raspberries. Spoon mixture into pie crust.

Refrigerate a minimum of 2 hours before serving.

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