What is the best olive oil?
In general, the best olive oil is extra virgin olive oil. Also known by its acronym EVOO.
The highest quality means it is the healthiest and tastes much better. Extra virgin olive oil is 100% olive juice of the highest quality and is the best choice to take raw. Either on toast, as a dressing for salads and vegetables or as a main ingredient for sauces.
The benefits of olive oil are numerous:
– Protects against inflammation
– Reduces bad cholesterol, LDL-c
– Raises HDL cholesterol levels (good)
– Prevents diabetes
– Benefits the control of hypertension
– Reduces the occurrence of thrombosis
What are the types of olive oil?
The types of olive oil are extra virgin olive oil, virgin olive oil and olive oil.
– Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). The highest quality since its juice comes from perfect olives, extracted by mechanical procedures, without physical or mechanical defects, with a maximum acidity of 0.8º and a high level of fruitiness.
– Virgin olive oil. Its juice comes from olives with slight defects that may be because the quality of the olive is inferior or due to not-so-careful extraction processes. Its maximum acidity is 2º.
– Olive oil. The lowest quality since it is the product of a mixture of refined olive oil and virgin olive oil.
There is olive oil that is not suitable for human consumption, called lampante olive oil. This oil comes from poor-quality olives, either because they have suffered from pests or because they have been picked from the ground from late harvests, etc. It has an acidity greater than 3º.
This lampante oil goes through a refining process (a chemical process). This refining removes all the defects, but it also removes all its vitamins and flavour. As previously mentioned, the result is refined olive oil that needs mixing with virgin olive oil for sale.
Difference between virgin and extra virgin olive oil.
The difference between virgin and extra virgin olive oil lies in the acidity and type of olive.
Extra virgin olive oil has a chemical acidity of less than 0.8º and without any defect, as it is extracted from the highest quality olives. The organoleptic and nutritional properties of the olives remain intact.
Virgin olive oil has an acidity of less than or equal to 2º. It is not as excellent as extra virgin as it suffers some degradation in its production process.
What container is preferable for olive oil?
Dark glass is the best container for preserving extra virgin olive oil since natural light favours photo-oxidation and deterioration.
Other recommended containers are lined boxes or stainless steel.
Although, the most used is plastic since it is the cheapest, lightest and most resistant. In addition, it is easily recyclable, and it is possible to add elements in its manufacture to darken it.
What does olive oil 0.4º mean? And 1º?
As we have already mentioned, olive oil is a mixture of refined oil obtained by a chemical process and virgin olive oil. Refined oil has no smell, no taste and almost no acidity. The difference is in the % of virgin olive oil that it contains.
0.4º is a mild olive oil containing less virgin olive oil.
1º is a more intense olive oil because it contains more virgin olive oil or a variety more intense in flavour, such as Picual.
When is the best time to buy olive oil?
To find out the best time to buy virgin olive oil, we must ask what harvest it is from. But generally, if you purchase oil for the whole year, it is preferable to do it from December to January.
Does olive oil expire?
Olive oil, virgin or extra virgin, does not expire. It is a non-perishable product. It has a best-before date but can be consumed after that date without health risks. But it loses its organoleptic qualities and reduces its quality with time.
How to know if olive oil is bad?
To know if the olive oil is in poor condition, you have to look at three indicators:
- The colour. Olive oils, virgin and extra virgin olive oils have a range of colours from deep green to gold. It may indicate that it is in poor condition if it presents a different colour.
- Smell. Its typical aroma is fruity or vegetal. If, on the other hand, it is in poor condition, it usually smells of wax, old nuts, solvent, or varnish.
- Flavour. Over time, the acidity of olive oil increases, weakening the flavour and giving rise to a rancid oil.
What is monovarietal olive oil?
Monovarietal olive oils are those produced with a single type of olive.
In the world, there are about 250 varieties of olive trees. Each olive has a different morphology and different flavours. The most widespread in Spain are the picual, cornicabra, hojiblanca or arbequina.
What is a coupage olive oil?
On the contrary, a coupage olive oil is produced by mixing different varieties of olives.
What is the best way to preserve olive oil?
To ensure that olive oil retains all its properties for as long as possible, four factors must be taken into account:
- Smells. Avoid keeping with other products since olive oil has a great capacity to absorb foreign odours.
- Place. Store in a dark place without natural light. Light favours its oxidation.
- Packaging. Always store in opaque containers, preferably glass, although it can also be stored in plastic containers.
- Temperature. Keep it at a constant temperature, with the optimum storage temperature being 18ºC.
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