Pinzimonio and Silvia Dotto ceramics

At the recent Slow Food Vancouver tasting, I met Silvia Dotto, a talented local potter. We immediately recognised in each other a passion for olive oil, slow food and Italy. Silvia makes beautiful ceramic designs that are perfect for the table. Stayed tuned for future collaboration!

I thought her dipping bowl, pictured above, would be perfect for serving the great olive oil ‘dip’ known as pinzimonio. This is a little appetizer that comes from the Rome area, which simply consists of very good olive oil and a bit of salt. You slice fresh vegetables (carrots, celery and fennel, for example) and dip them in the oil. Some people like to add fresh cracked black pepper or garlic, but I like this simple version because it really lets you taste the olive oil. This offers a change from the usual dunking of bread in olive oil, which can be filling and hard on the waistline. Something this simple is truly wonderful when you have great ingredients.