For fans of olive oil, there really nothing better. What's more, many of these same fans have taken it upon themselves to find the best olive oil for cooking because they want all of their food preparation to have the amazing taste of which they can't get enough.
The issue for many, however, is that there has been a persistent belief generated for quite some time about whether or not you should actually introduce olive oil to heat in cooking. Often, you'll find a pretty even "50/50" split between yes and no. So, the question still remains - if there are so many out there that think that olive oil & heat don't mix, should I actually cook with it?
Yes, you can cook using olive oil. Many leading experts in the food world, as well as the medical profession & even on the anthropology front, have chimed in and noted that when you consider the amount of time that this nearly sacred liquid has been mentioned in written history, as well as an instrumental part of food preparation in certain parts of the world for many, many (did we say many?) generations, it would seem odd that cooking would be so harmful.
There is a consensus, however, about ways you can go about choosing the best olive oil for cooking in your home:
Know Your Application - Depending in the type of cooking you'll be doing (e.g., sautéing, frying, baking, roasting), you'll want to use a different type of olive oil that works best.
Know A Little About Oil Types/Grades - By knowing levels & grades, you can get better acquainted with how best to choose an oil for your proposed application.
Price Can Matter - It may be a little black and white to say that if you pay a lot, the oil will be better, but according to many culinary experts, there seems to be agreement that on the other end of the spectrum. If you buy as cheap as possible, you're certainly playing the odds for getting a bum deal on an oil. The good thing is that production is steadily rising in the U.S., so choices are available for various price points.
Identify What You're Cooking - It turns out that depending on what you're preparing, a differently type of oil may work best. Considering the ways you prepare steak versus fish, it certainly makes sense that you'd want to have a distinction between the two.
Try A Few - Because there are good oils to use at lower price points, you can actually try out a few brands and see which you like more. Better yet, you may be a resident in a state where production is on par wine production. This means you can get some killer olive oil for a great price, and you're supporting a local company.
You may be shocked to find that the best olive oil for cooking doesn't have to be an exotic international brand. it may be right in your own backyard, so to speak. Just remember that a little knowledge will do you good.
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