We all know that olive oil is one of the best health-boosting ingredients EVER. But did you know it’s also one of the most corrupted?
Making olive oil is the simplest thing. I know because I was making it as a child with my grandfather in the South of France. The first thing you need is a comb. Yes, just like the comb you use for your hair, only much bigger. You comb the branches and collect olives in the net you lay on the ground. Then you bring them to the local mill so that olives (pits and all) get pressed into a mixture of olive juice and oil. Wait long enough and it separates so that you can collect the fruit of your labor. That’s the first cold pressing, and we call it “extra-virgin” because its taste is awesome and its acidity very low.
But then some other guy comes and buys the already-pressed olives, takes them to his own mill, applies solvents, heat, and intense pressure, then dilutes the oil with soybean oil, and sells that as “olive oil.” Since they can’t sell it as “extra-virgin,” then they sell it as “pure,” “pomace,” or even “light olive oil.”
I use extra-virgin olive oil as part of my fat-burning way of cooking. It always helps me make bland vegetables tasty and give a nice sear to lean meats and fish. This is what you really need to know about olive oil. Straight up from the skinny chef.
- If it doesn’t say “extra-virgin,” then it’s not (Don’t buy!).
- Never buy “pure,” “pomace,” or “light” olive oil (Avoid!).
- Taste test. Grab a teaspoon and taste it. If it doesn’t taste good to you, then the quality isn’t good enough.
- Select a cheaper, more generic extra-virgin olive oil you like for cooking.
- Select the best “estate” olive oil you can afford to drizzle on salads, fish, or vegetables. A label from the European DOP or approved by the California Olive Oil Council is a good sign.
- You can cook with extra-virgin olive oil. It has a high enough smoke point and gives a nice taste to foods.
Look into your pantry now and let me know what you find. The Eat More, Burn More community is growing fast and I’d love to hear from you on my Facebook page.
Also make sure you check my easy olive oil dressing for salads on page 89 of my cookbook. This is your key to easy fat loss by eating more fat-burning vegetables.