So, you think you know all you need to know about your favourite brand of cooking oil? Believe it or not, olive oil has a few secrets that are not described on the bottle’s label. From the sordid relationship with the Italian mafia to the properties debunking the idea that olive oil is good for a person’s skin, this article will provide information that olive oil is far more than a tasty addition to a green salad. And it’s now so popular, you can even get an olive oil subscription!
Considered one of the unrefined versions of olive oil, extra-virgin olive is one of the high-quality options when looking at grades of olive oil. To meet the standards of extra-virgin olive oil, there must be an absence of heat and chemicals allowing the oil to retain an olive flavour. Moreover, the extra-virgin oil contains less than a single percent of oleic acid contributing to a richer colour and stronger olive oil taste.
1: Extra-Virgin Olive Oil Will Freeze To A Solid State
One of the greatest tests to determine if the olive oil is extra-virgin is to freeze the oil. While this is considered a myth with most oils mimicking the olive oil’s freezing temperature, extra-virgin olive oil is unique in that it will freeze to a solid state. This process is dependent entirely on the levels of oleic acid present in the oil.
2: The Most Olive Oil Is Consumed By Greek People
According to statistics, Greeks consume, on average, in excess of five gallons of olive oil per person per annum. This is a large amount of olive oil and reduces the consumption of the United States by more than a single litre.
3: Light Olive Oil Does Not Have Less Calories
Believe it or not, light oil does not refer to the number of calories in the product; instead it refers to the ratio of refined olive oil and extra-virgin olive oil. Extra-virgin olive oil is the element providing the oil with its unique taste.
4: Olive Oil Is Available In Various Colours
The colour of the olive oil can change as time passes because of oxidisation; however, olive oil is available in various colours ranging from green and deep gold to pale yellow. The change in colour is dependent on the level of chlorophyll in the oil. If the olive oil is green, the oil has a high level of antioxidants with slight bitterness and intense pepper flavouring.
5: Olive Oil Is Created Using The Fruit And Not The Olive Seed
Most oils are created using the seed of a fruit, but this is not the case when it comes to olive oil. When producing olive oil, the ripened olive fruit is mechanically pressed.
6: Do Not Expose To Light, Oxygen Or Heat
To ensure olive oil remains “healthy”, it is important to store the oil in a dark and cool place away from heat and light. Heat and light increase the process of oxidation, which will cause the olive oil to become rancid.
7: The Most Olive Oil Is Produced By Spain
Approximately 95 percent of the global olive oil supply is produced by the Mediterranean. According to statistics, Spain produces 50 percent of the global supply and Italy produces the remaining 15 percent.
8: Cloudy Olive Oil Can Be Used
Olive oil products appear cloudy for various reasons. It is possible that the olive oil is unfiltered meaning that the pulp and sediment have not been removed. It is also possible that the olive oil is chilled and cold oil can appear cloudy. Sediment in unfiltered olive oil is safe to consume being pieces of the olive added for natural flavouring of the oil.
9: Olive Oil Can Be Used For Frying
Many people warn of low smoke points of olive oil as compared to corn or peanut oil and do not use olive oil for frying. When oil reaches a smoke point, it releases toxic compounds that are unsuitable for consumption. However, refined olive oil has a smoke point of 486 degrees Fahrenheit; therefore, it is highly suited to frying. Oddly enough, extra-virgin olive oil is not recommended because it has a low smoke point.