Olive oil is an essential ingredient in our diet as it lowers the risk of heart diseases. It is essential, however, to know the appropriate use of the different types of olive oil in our day to day cooking to get maximum health benefits out of it.
Olive oil may be classified under three basic categories – Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Virgin Olive Oil and Pure olive oil.
Extra Virgin olive oil is the purest form olive oil which is bright yellow or green in colour and is rich in aroma and flavour. International regulatory authorities have set the maximum level of acidity in extra virgin oil at 1 percent. To get the most of good health and flavour, this category of olive oil may be used uncooked in salad dressing, or simply as a garnish on bread.
Virgin olive oil has an acidity level of up to 3.3% and has a milder flavour and aroma when compared to extra virgin olive oil. This olive oil is also best used uncooked. You may use it to enhance the flavour of sauces and dips or as a topping on pasta and veggies.
Pure Olive oil is similar to virgin olive oil in terms of its acidity level, however, it is less expensive than virgin olive oil due to its low nutrient content. This type of olive is best for deep frying and high – heat recipes.