Olive oil has earned a place of honor in the kitchens of housewives in different parts of the world. Thanks to its beneficial properties and special aroma, it enhances the taste of various dishes. How to understand which oil to choose for a particular dish? The secret lies in the intensity of the oil — the richness of its taste (the natural bitterness of the oil, pungency and fruitiness) and the smell itself.
There are three intensities of olive oils: light, medium and high. It depends on several factors: the variety of olives, the region where the olives grow, and the time of their harvest.
With the right selection, olive oil reveals its benefits and enhances the taste of the dish. How to choose oil? Let’s try to figure it out!
Light Intensity Oil:
Ideal for non-cooked or steamed dishes. Such oil delicately emphasizes, for example, caprese, a traditional Italian dish of sliced mozzarella and tomatoes, which is seasoned with olive oil and finely chopped basil.
Or serve this oil with fish baked in salt — the dish is distinguished by its simplicity of preparation and maximum usefulness, as it is baked in its own juice. Oil delicately complements the taste of sea fish.
If you want to beat dishes such as soup, salad, grilled meat in a new way, make an interesting dressing, then you need to take oil with more pronounced taste qualities — medium intensity.
Kefir mask with olive oil for colored hair
The most common use of oil is salad dressing. Vegetables are especially fragrant, and it is impossible not to add a riot of greens to your favorite salad in this combination. Basil, cilantro, dill — all these herbs are ideally combined with medium intensity extra virgin olive oil.
This oil is of medium intensity and has an incredible aroma of freshly cut grass. Its production lasts only 24 hours using the first cold pressing method.
The secret of using oil with salads: It is important to season the dish with oil and salt first, and only then add vinegar or lemon. In this way, lettuce will retain its juiciness and fresh look longer, because the oil forms a special layer on the surface of the products that protects the leaves from wilting.
Grilled meat It will be even tastier and healthier if the finished dish is poured with olive oil. Everything you cook on charcoal is dishes with a juicy, bright aroma, which means that for such dishes we take medium-intensity oil.
High intensity oil softens the taste rich herbs and spices. By adding a small amount of oil to a spicy dish (for example, Indian cuisine), you will give it not only a kind of “softness”, but also a unique aroma. Also, these oils are ideal for aged cheeses, barbecue dishes and desserts. It is important to note that high intensity oil pairs well with fatty meals as well as high saturation meals.
Interestingly, for some dishes and snacks, you can choose oils of any intensity, according to your tastes and preferences. For example, among Italians, the most common snack is oleo e pane. It is delightful in its simplicity — fresh, fragrant bread is served at the table, which is poured with olive oil and sprinkled with spices.
And how not to mention the Italian bruschetta, which consists of a dried baguette, olive oil and garlic. Over time, tomatoes, mozzarella, prosciutto and other products began to be added to the recipe. Now there are so many bruschetta recipes that it’s enough for a separate cookbook. But the basis remains the same — dried bread with high-quality olive oil and spices, the rest is up to your imagination.
Try it, find new flavor combinations, add oils at the right intensity to compliment each ingredient.
Reminder: pairing olive oil with dishes
Light Intensity: seafood, fish, steamed white meat, carpaccio, fresh cheese, fruit salads, mayonnaise base.
Average intensity: grilled dishes, antipasti, legumes, salads, pasta/rice with red sauce, tartare, poultry, soups
High Intensity: red meat, aged cheeses, barbecue dishes, desserts
Beauty Recipes: Olive Oil
Salt peeling with olive oil and lemon juice
The opinion of the editors may not coincide with the opinion of the author of the article.