Sunday, November 19, 2017

Olive Oil

When its priced is too low, rest assured, it is not worth buying. The good ones are expensive but worth what you pay. Taste, color and smell are the keys. Olive oil is an essential ingredient of great Mediterranean and European food.

Extra virgin oil is less that 7% acid and comes from the first pressing. The first pressing is a cold pressing. It may be filtered or not and flavor depends on many factors. Rich and easily digested, olive oil has a fruity taste and is used as a first choice by many better chefs. Air, heat, and light are the enemies of the oil so displaying your oil on the counter in a fancy clear glass container it not a good idea. The temperature you store wine is also good for olive oil just below 60 F.

Areas producing excellent olive oils are Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, Portugal, and California. The lighter color oils are better for frying as the have more tolerance for high heat. Do confuse this oil with one marked “LITE” as it is no longer olive oil but a combination of oils that are neither lower in calories nor as healthy.

I prefer only the most flavorful greenish unfiltered oil for dipping bread. If a recipe calls for olive oil, that means extra virgin olive oil unless it specifically say something else. Oil referred to as dipping grade tend to be tastier, high quality, and naturally more expensive.

Nothing beats your own side by side taste test, its just like learning to appreciate fine wine. What is a great oil: Simple, it is the one you like best. The highest quality is lively, bright, and full-bodied  with flavors that range from peppery to buttery depending on the variety of olives used and how ripe they are when harvested. Jump at a chance for comparative olive oil tasting as you may discover some you might otherwise come across.

According to the International Olive Council (IOC), extra-virgin olive oil must meet strict chemical and organoleptic (taste and smell) standards, including low levels of acidity and ultraviolet-light absorption. (High levels suggests poor processing or deterioration.) It has been extracted from mashed fruit by mechanical means (i.e. cold pressed) It should have at least some fruitiness and be free of defects in flavor and aroma. The standards can be found on the IOC website:

Some of the brands I buy are based on modest price including: Colavita, and California Olive Ranch.

divina extra virgin olive oil

colavita extra virgin olive oil

No comments:

Post a Comment