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What happened to regular (non-virgin) olive oil?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Before the 1990's when virgin and evoo was sold, markets carried plain old olive oil labeled as "pure" or olive pomace oil.  The virgin oils were expensive and because of their low smoke points were to be used for low heat cooking or dressings. Because they were first pressed oils there was a limited supply.  At least that's what I remember.

 

For the past 10 years or so I can't recall seeing much, if any lower grade oils on the shelves.  Everything is virgin or evoo, which is now used for all types of cooking, except for very high heat.

 

So, what happened to the pure olive oil?  I don't miss the crappy pomace, which I figure is used in a lot of restaurants, cafeterias and food making factories.  And why is virgin and evoo now okay for frying and sautee?

post #2 of 4
They just started labeling it as virgin. smile.gif)

Seriously, lab tests done on an large sample of common evoo revealed that many didn't meet the standard of evoo

You can't lay on the beach and drink rum all day unless you start in the morning

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You can't lay on the beach and drink rum all day unless you start in the morning

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post #3 of 4

EVOO is first press and has standards for acidity based on the region/country it was produced in.

Virgin is still a pressed product but with a higher acidity.

Pomace is not a pressed product as the oils are removed with either heat or chemical treatments.

Consumable Pomace is a blend of pressed and treated or refined oil.

I sincerely hope no company is selling Pomace labeled as EVOO but the USDA does not enforce OO grades.

"Pure" Olive oil is just a step above Pomace but is still a blend of processed and pressed oil. I still see it frequently as well as Pomace but we have a lot of Italian Markets in my area. You can find both at most restaurant suppliers as well.

The estate EVOO that Costco caries is an excellent value but I wouldn't waste it on frying based on cost alone.

 

Dave

 

I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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post #4 of 4

I have several Middle Eastern markets in my area and I see a lot of "pure" grade oils there as well. Those markets typically carry oils from a variety of countries--Greece, Spain, Italy, Turkey, Morocco, The West Bank.

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