Olive oil is derived from olives. It's high in healthy fats that are good for your heart and brain. If you don't already eat olive oil, you're missing out on some great health benefits and flavors. Here are four tips to help you enjoy olive oil
1. Use the right type of olive oil for the job.
There are many different types of olive oil available. Extra virgin olive oil is more unrefined. It's pressed using a cold-press process that allows it to keep a richer color and a more olive-heavy flavor than other types of olive oils. Extra virgin olive oil is great for raw applications. It's best used in salad dressings and served with bread. Cooking extra virgin olive oil can cause it to lose some of its flavor. When you want olive oil for cooking, you can choose virgin or plain olive oil, which has been processed for a less distinctive taste.
2. Store your olive oil properly.
Olive oil can go rancid just like any other oil. Prevent this from happening by storing your olive oil wisely. Keep your oil out of direct sunlight and away from heat. High-quality olive oil is usually sold in dark glass bottles to prevent sunlight from spoiling the oil within. Your kitchen cupboard is a good place to keep your olive oil, but anywhere cool and dark will do. It's not advisable to store your olive oil in the refrigerator because it will become solid at cold temperatures.
3. Try flavored varieties of olive oil.
Flavored olive oil can give you an entirely new experience. Look for flavors that will compliment the types of food you intend to cook. For example, lemon basil flavored extra virgin olive oil pairs well with fish and Italian food. After your food is finished cooking, you can season it with a light drizzle of flavored olive oil. The flavor will add an herbal zing to your dish that can elevate it to a whole new level.
4. Pair it with balsamic vinegar.
Balsamic vinegar can enhance the taste of olive oil with a little bit of a tart bite. Choose a high-quality balsamic vinegar that contains fruity notes. A little bit of vinegar will go a long way. If you want a tasty snack, pour a little bit of olive oil in a dish with balsamic vinegar. You can further season the mixture with freshly cracked pepper and a little coarse salt. The oil and vinegar will separate but that's nothing to be concerned about. Dip fresh, crusty French bread in the oil and vinegar for a snack that's delicious at any time of the day.