The “Extra” in EVOO represents the absolute highest grade for olive oil–the best you can buy. Virgin oil is classified “extra” when it has less than .8% free oleic acid.
Olive oil should be stored in a cool, dark place. Well controlled pantry conditions are recommended. Light and heat are two of the primary enemies of olive oil. Packaging in dark glass is also important to shield olive oil from UV rays and light. It does not need to be stored in the refrigerator.
The other enemy of olive oil is “time”. Freshness provides key taste attributes, and 12 months after harvest you will begin to lose that fresh taste. Additionally, the Vitamin E content will begin to naturally decrease after that 1st year of use. Like many other consumable products, olive oil does have a shelf life.
A tablespoon of olive oil contains 120 calories, 14 grams of fat, and no cholesterol. Seventy seven percent (77%) of the fat in olive oil is monounsaturated, and nine percent (9%) is polyunsaturated fat; fourteen percent (14%) is vegetable-derived saturated fat. Virgin olive oils also contain the antioxidants beta-carotene and Vitamin E, as well as the phenolic compounds tyrosol and hydroxytyrosol. Olive oil contains no salt and is naturally cholesterol-free. While there is no scientific concensus, studies suggest that when substituted for saturated fats, monounsaturated fat lowers blood cholesterol, especially the “harmful” low density lipoproteins (LDL) while protecting the “good” high density lipoproteins (HDL).
Certainly. EVOO is suitable for sautés, sauces, marinades, vinaigrettes, in addition to being a fine finishing oil, or simply enjoyed with a baguette. Be careful however, to never leave any sautê pan on a stovetop alone. Olive oil at high heat has the capacity to burn.
Taste is the most obvious difference between olive oil and the store bought vegetable oils. Vegetable oils are basically tasteless, and merely add fats without adding taste. Extra virgin olive oil adds a specific fresh flavor all its own, making it a great replacement for butter and margarine in almost any situation. Extra virgin
olive oil, plain or flavored, is becoming very popular as a dipping or topping for bread, as an addition to recipes in place of butter, as a component of marinades and salad dressings. Vegetable oils are usually extracted using petroleum-based chemical solvents, and then must be highly refined to remove impurities. Along with the impurities, refining removes taste, color and nutrients. Extra virgin olive oils are not processed or refined. Extra virgin olive oil is fresh pressed from the fruit of the olive tree, leaving the color, taste, vitamins & nutrients in tact. Because of its antioxidant components, olive oil keeps itself from oxidizing, so it keeps itself fresh longer than vegetable oils.
Yes, please! Use it on vegetables, rice, potatoes, in baking, on toast, just about anything!
Extra Virgin Olive oil is an important source of antioxidants. The most important are polyphenols, antioxidants, and tocopherols (vitamin E). There are as many as 5.5 mg of polyphenols antioxidant in every tablespoon of olive oil (15 ml) and 1.6 mg of Vitamin E per tablespoon of olive oil. Total proximate of antioxidants: 7 mg in every 15 ml of olive oil. The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of antioxidents (vitamins, minerals, polyphenols, etc.) for a 25-year old male for Antioxidants is 120 mg/day. That means that extra virgin olive oil could be 12 % of the daily source of antioxidants in your diet if you just use two tablespoon of EVOO in your salads. And it could be almost 30 % if you drizzled it over fish/meat or roast vegetables or used it for bread dipping.
Because they are associated with several healthful effects in humans:
There are 2 types of balsamic vinegar, Traditional and Commercial. A quasigovernmental body in Modena, Italy (balsamic vinegar’s birthplace) regulates the production of TRADITIONAL BALSAMIC VINEGAR. The white and sugary Trebbiano grapes, grown in the Northern Region of Italy near Modena, form the base of the world’s only true balsamic vinegars. The grapes ripen on the vine for as long as possible to develop their sugar. The juice, or “must”, is pressed out of the grapes and boiled down. Then the vinegar production and aging process begins, initially in oaken kegs. Over the years it graduates to smaller and smaller kegs made of chestnut, cherrywood, ash, mulberry, and juniper until it is ready for sale. These woods progressively add character to the vinegar.
Just as we’ve described with Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Balsamic’s enemies are light and heat, so cool and dark storage spaces are the best.
All light balsamic vinegar is subject to oxidation. Over time, this natural process leads to a darkening of the vinegar from gold to a deep amber color. This process does not affect the flavor of the balsamic vinegar in any way. If appearance is critical, we recommend that these light vinegars be consumed within three months
of purchase and then refrigerated to slow the deepening of color.