Leith’s Olive Oil Recipe competition 2016!
Featured: (left to right) Kirsty Beighton’s Wining recipe. Hetty Gullifer’s blueberry, lemon and olive oil shortbread. And on the far right Tassy Goddall’s beautiful creation).
The the very first I & P Olive Oil Recipe Competition to be held in the UK, and we couldn’t have asked for more!
Held at renowned Leith’s School of Food & Wine in West London on Thursday 19th May, there were nine finalists competing with their own original recipes designed around one of the top quality extra virgin olive oils produced by I & P, a small artisan olive oil producer in Canino, Lazio, just an hour north of Rome.
Chairing the judging panel was Jason Wass, Group Head Chef of Polpo Restaurants, also judging was Camila Schneideman, Director of Leith’s and Nancy Gilchrist MW
, UK Ambassador for I & P. In his summing up Jason commented that the overall standard was very high indeed and that a great deal of imaginative creativity had gone into designing the dishes. Each one had something particular to distinguish it above the average, whether it was the exceptionally light and clean-flavoured shortbread or lemon jelly of Hetty Gullifer’s blueberry, lemon and olive oil shortbread
using or the basil-infused olive oil jelly of Jack Parr’s creative dessert. Both were using the I & P Grand Cru Spinicci olive oil made from the Caninese olive.
Presentation was also of a high calibre. The overall winner of the competition was Kirsty Beighton
with her very well-balanced and professionally presented Pistachio and olive oil ice cream with salted dark chocolate pistachio crumb and thyme-infused olive oil jelly using the I & P House Blend (based on five varieties: Caninese, Frantoio, Pendolino, Leccino and Maurino) but special mention was also given to runner up Tassy Goodall for her particularly artistic olive oil, pistachio and cardamon tart drizzled in an olive oil and honey topping served with raspberry dust, baked figs and fresh yoghurt and vanilla cream. Tassy used the I & P Grand Cru Gioacchina Leccino oil.
I&P are the only olive oil producer in the world to offer six separate ‘cru’ bottlings of the same cultivar from the same property. These six separate plots within the I&P grove, all grow Caninese (the oldest recorded olive variety, depicted on a fresco dating back to Etruscan times) and each produces an oil of distinctly different character; much as one would find in the vineyards around a Burgundian village for example.