It wasn’t long before Mediterranean style restaurants began serving bread and olive oil, known as bread dipping. You would pour olive oil from an olive oil cruet into an olive oil dipping dish and dip the bread in the EVOO. Nowadays, many restaurants have elegant gourmet oil and vinegar cruets on their tables and serve bread dip with the finest olive oil dipping dishes. It doesn’t stop there, many casinos and hotels also do the same with the fine handblown cruet.
Olive oil has been in the Mediterranean diet for 5000 years, along with bread. Started in Persia, olive oil was thought to have been cultivated first as a result of breeding experiments with the native thorny wild olive. The Egyptians used olive oil as well as the Phoenicians. The major civilizations such as the Arabs, Cretans, Romans, and the Carthaginians of the Mediterranean have played a role in the distribution of olive oil throughout the nation. The name Cordoba, came from the word corteb, which means Phoenician olive press.
Many more nations wanted more olive trees planted as the growing of the olive tree spread. Olive oil also was used not only for food, but for medicinal purposes. It was also used for the bath as well as a symbol for peace in Rome. The demand for olives and olive oil was very high, so in order for other nations to keep peace with the others, they had to supply olive oil. Olive trees take ten years before they begin producing fruit. After that, a continuous supply of oil and olives was produced to ensure peace and security.
Olive oil didn’t stop in the east. Iberian conquistadors planted olive trees in the new world. The olive tree was also produced in California, Mexico, Chile, the Caribbean, Brazil, Argentina, and Peru. The olive trees grow very well in a perfect growing climate such as California. Since then, olive orchards and olive oil has become more and more plentiful.