EVOO Stories

Vacinata olive oil: a family story

Written by Veronica Lavenia

Vacinata is a family story. A story that begins in Portugal, in Cótimos (village in the Beira Interior region), in an intertwining of colors and flavors that makes the production of Extra virgin olive oil the economic key of this area of the country.

The Ramos family has been linked to this territory for generations. Everything stems from the passion for the land, especially for the olive tree, which prompted the family to invest in olive-growing entrepreneurship, buying olive groves abandoned for many years, due to internal migration to the cities.

©Azeite Vacinata

In 2018, Luis and Augusta go further with the construction of an oil mill which gives the Municipality of Cótimos the opportunity to relaunch the economic activity of the sector. A successful bet that adds an important step to the enormous potential of olive oil Portugal.

©Azeite Vacinata

Vacinata produces two types of Extra virgin olive oils that differ in their fruitiness (typical of the ripeness of the olives at the time of harvest).

© Azeite Vacinata

Terras Senhoriais Extra Virgin Olive Oil is organic, green fruity taste, with aromas of olive leaf, artichoke and green apple. Notes of carob, pecans and cashews, prolonged by a medium spiciness at the bottom of the mouth characterize this oil, ideal to combine with salads but also perfect for the preparation of cakes and biscuits.

Val d’Dama has a ripe fruity taste, with aromas of dried tomatoes, pecans and toasted cashews. Slightly bitter and spicy flavor at the end. It is a round olive oil with a soft consistency, excellent for savory and sweet dishes.

©Azeite Vacinata

The technology used by the company for the transformation of olive oil is modern and powerful. The machines are fast and hygienic. The temperature does not exceed 27 ° (crucial for obtaining an Extra virgin olive oil that keeps its organoleptic properties intact).

©Azeite Vacinata

The olive harvest is mechanical to limit the damage caused to the tree and fruit. The olive arrives fresh at the mill. The branches and leaves are separated. The olives are washed to be transformed.

©Azeite Vacinata

Pulp and stone are crushed together. The work of the thermo-mixer is slow and continuous, for an hour so that the drops of oil collect into larger drops.

©Azeite Vacinata

Vacinata Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the result of sustainable, organic cultivation in uncontaminated places that goes hand in hand with modern processing machinery that enhances the quality of the olives and their juice, ensuring safety and hygiene.

© Azeite Vacinata

Two questions to Marco Ramos:

Marco Ramos is the young heir of Vacinata, a company that exports Portuguese pride to the world, which he describes as follows:

What are the soil and climatic characteristics of the area that make Vacinata such a special EVOO?

The municipality of Cótimos is part of the municipality of Trancoso: a mountainous area, with large differences in height (which in some points exceed 900 meters).

The municipality has an altitude climate, with hot summers and rigid winters, with frequent frosts and, from time to time, the “Sincelo”, a beautiful and evocative phenomenon (“Sincelo” is a Portuguese word for a phenomenon that requires atmospheric conditions due to its formation, where several factors are combined: low temperature, humidity and wind).

Sincelo-©Vacinata

As for the flora, olive trees, vineyards and almond trees stand out. The region is characterized by peaks of granite, schist and quartz or tourmaline.

Which processing method (or other) makes the Vacinata different from the other Portuguese EVOs?

A natural blend. As they are today, our olive trees have never moved since they were planted. The result is a blend of four varieties typical of our region: Galega, Madural, Cobrançosa and Picual. When harvest time comes, we don’t separate the varieties, we keep the natural mix of proportions for each one. Olive oil comes out with a unique identity.

©Azeite Vacinata

Vegan cookies with Vacinata olive oil:

Anyone who favors the use of Extra virgin olive oil also for today’s preparation knows how much this ancient, powerful and healthy ingredient is versatile and perfectly suitable even for sweet recipes.

Still little used (especially by professionals), EVOO becomes the key ingredient even in vegan shortcrust pastry.

My proposal is ideal to satisfy the desire for sweet in a healthier version. Terras Senhoriais is the EVOO that enhances the pastry and goes perfectly with dark chocolate. Each recipe has its own EVOO. For these vegan chocolate cookies, between the two Vacinata proposals, Terras Senhoriais is the ingredient that makes a difference.

Vegan chocolate cookies-©Veronica Lavenia- The Wolf Post

Ingredients for 12 cookies

  • 300 g of wholemeal flour
  • 80 g of raw coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of raw cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon of organic baking powder
  • 150 dark chocolate drops
  • 100 ml of Vacinata Terras Senhoriais Extra virgin olive oil
  • 50 ml of water (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180° C (350 ° F / Gas 4).Mix the dry ingredients with the chocolate chips.
  2. Add Vacinata olive oil and water (if the mixture is too dry and difficult to work with).
  3. Form a dough. With wet hands, take a large amount of dough to create thick and large cookies.
  4. Arrange the biscuits in a baking tray, lined with parchment paper and bake for ten minutes.

About the author

Veronica Lavenia

PhD.
Writer and magazine contributor, some of her works have appeared in the most popular International magazines.
Her scientific papers have been published in some of the most renowned international literary academic journals.
Writer| Translator| Communications manager at "The Wolf Post", since the birth of the platform.

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