Extra virgin olive oil: health and taste in the kitchen

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The different varieties offer a range of unique aromas and flavors, at the same time taking care of your health and protecting you from cardiovascular diseases. It is not just used for seasonings: it is also the most suitable for cooking, but you have to know how to use it.

Olive oil, virgin or extra virgin, is the best ambassador of our famous Mediterranean diet. Of the great variety of oils on the market (sunflower, corn, grape seeds …), the olive oil stands out for the richness of flavors and aromas and because it is the one that best protects health.

Index
A little bit every day does very well
More healthy fried food
Attention to water
You must never reuse it
Check its appearance
Attention to temperature
Raw consumption
In salads, it helps you against cancer
How to control seasoning
Do you know what it means to be extra virgin or not?
The varieties
A little bit every day does very well
On a nutritional level, what differentiates olive oil from other vegetable fats is the high content of monounsaturated fatty acids, which have a beneficial effect on cardiovascular health, as well as making it more resistant to degradation at high cooking temperatures.

Moderation is essential. Experts point out that 3 daily portions (ie 3 tablespoons) of oil are enough to reap the full benefits of this food. With this amount you get almost half of the essential fatty acids and 25% of the vitamin E you need every day.

More healthy fried food
This oil is capable of reaching higher frying temperatures than the others. But you need to keep some rules in mind so that its use is completely safe:

Attention to water
Water accelerates the deterioration of the oil, so the foods you fry must be as dry as possible. It is advisable not to cover the pot during frying, because the steam would condense on the lid and fall back to the liquid state in the oil. Eventually use a lid with holes or the traditional retina.

You must never reuse it
Olive oil (but in reality no type of oil, even if seed oil) should never be reused, nor is it better to mix different types, all the more so with new oil with used oil. Also remember that the oil should be stored well protected from light, air, humidity and heat (between 15 and 20 ° C) and always bottled in dark containers.

Check its appearance
When you use it, check its color and smell. If it is slightly dark, dense, has an
uninviting appearance or an unpleasant smell, you should throw it away immediately.

Attention to temperature
Foods rich in water must be fried at about 140 ° C, those that must form a crust at 160 ° C and breaded and small fish at about 180 ° C. At over 200 ° C the oil starts to smoke and this means that it degrades first, producing products that are harmful to health. Therefore you must always prevent the oil from reaching such a high temperature, ie the point of smoke.

Raw consumption
You can consume it daily, always checking its quantity. It is an excellent idea not only to take care of your heart, but also to delay aging and improve the functioning of the stomach and pancreas.

In salads, it helps you against cancer
According to a recent study by the University of Ohio (United States), the carotenoids present in salads, which reduce the risk of having certain types of cancer, are absorbed more if accompanied by monounsaturated fats such as those from olive oil.

How to control seasoning
In order not to exceed with the quantities of seasoning, you can use the packages with spray diffuser or use the spoon.

Do you know what it means to be extra virgin or not?
Extra virgin olive oil It is the superior category oil and is obtained directly from olives and through mechanical pressing.

Virgin olive oil It is obtained in the same way as extra virgin olive oil, but it is left slightly more acid.

Olive oil Contains various oils subjected to a refining treatment and virgin olive oils.

Pomace oil It is extracted through physical-chemical procedures from olive residues (peel, hazel) and is refined.

The varieties
In Italy there are about 500 cultivars. Every territory or area has its varieties.

Frantoio
This oil, dark green with golden reflections, is of excellent quality: fine, aromatic, sapid and fruity, with nuances of spicy and bitter.

Leccino
The oil, golden yellow with green reflections, is of excellent quality; fresh, slightly fruity, slightly bitter and spicy; has a taste of aromatic herbs.

Ogliarola
The Ogliarola di Avellino variety has a fruity aroma with olfactory notes of apple, other sweet fruit and tomato. It is rich in antioxidant substances.

Moraiolo
It is a good quality oil (high polyphenol content) and appreciated for its fruity scent with bitter and spicy nuances.

Pendolino
The oil is delicate and fragrant, with a hint of almond and slight bitter and spicy nuances. It is very cultivated and appreciated as a pollinator variety

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