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Sep 23, 2012 04:29 PM

How to know which olive oil to use?

When a recipe calls for EVOO, or even EXTRA EXTRA virgin olive oil which do you use?

Some of the lables on the olive oils in the grocery stores state EVOO while others will say best for saute/fryiing and others state for salads and dipping.

So how do I know when the label simply states Extra Virgin Olive Oil. What makes it for frying and what makes it best for raw eatting/use?

Is it color? and sometimes it is canned, (1 gal) how can I know what the color is if tht is the clue.

You can't get a sample taste, and even if I did, I wouldn't know what it was I was tasting for.

So what are your thoughts on using the best oil for the job????


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  1. Personally, I only use extra virgin olive oil in marinades, dressings, or on top of grilled veggies. For frying or sauteeing, I use regular (or light) olive oil. Extra virgin is too expensive to use for frying and you won't taste the difference anyway.

    1. "So what are your thoughts on using the best oil for the job????"

      I've always (20+ years of home cooking) gone with "the higher (and/or longer) the heat, the lower the price" when it comes to olive oil. To my taste buds, it doesn't really matter once the stuff is heated. That being said, I often use inexpensive grocery store EVOO for cooking.
      I save the super (often green, in lovely bottles) $$$ stuff for drizzling on salads or finished dishes.

      1. You can't trust olive oil to be "extra virgin" anyway. There is another thread here on that problem. Recently when I was at the international grocery, I took the advice of the shopkeeper to buy the Amir EVOO, which he said was from Tunisian olives. He seemed reliable enough, so I bought it for cooking, and at only $6 per liter, I don't care much what it is. For salad dressing, I buy smaller bottles, and then it's a matter of taste. You just have to take a chance, and when you find one you like, stick with it.

        1. I buy Trader Joe's Extra Virgin Olive Oil and use it for everything except deep fat frying, when I'm using butter or when I am dressing a salad with a special oil such as walnut, hazelnut or avocado. (Pancakes are the one exception, I use canola or peanut oil for them.)

          1. Quality EVOO should only be used as a finishing oil.

            If you're cooking with olive oil, just use the regular stuff.

            1 Reply
            1. re: ipsedixit

              It's hard to find "regular stuff" anymore, at least where I live, presumably because most producers are cheating by blending.