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Oily answers

Everything you need to know about oil from the perfect salad dressing to the right incentive for a wonderful meal.

by: Ideas | 06 Mar 2007

Olive Oil
It is high in mono-unsaturated fatty acids that help reduce blood cholesterol, and is rich in antioxidants. It has a fruity flavour and is especially good in Mediterranean style dishes.

Extra Virgin
The oil that is obtained from the first cold pressing of the olives. It is unrefined and is the purest olive oil with the most flavour and the lowest acidity level. It is also the most expensive. Use for delicately flavoured sauces and dressings, and as a condiment.

Is also unrefined, but is s lightly more acidic. It is more reasonably priced. Use for cooking as well as in salads and as a condiment.

Pure olive oil
This is oil obtained from additional pressings. It is refined and filtered and sometimes has virgin oil added to it for extra colour and flavour. Less expensive. Use for frying and cooking robustly flavoured dishes.

Light olive oil
Light olive oil has undergone a special filtration process. This oil does not have does not have fewer kilojoules – the word 'light' refers to the colour and the light flavour. Great for those who want the health benefits, but not the dinstinctive flavour of olive oil. Use for frying and salad dressing.

Mustard seed oil
Mustard seed oil is pressed from the seeds of Indian mustard plants and is widely used in Punjabi and Bengali cooking. It has a fragrant aroma and slightly spicy flavour. It is usually heated to smoking point for a few seconds before use. This procedure softens the harsh mustard flavour and makes it easier to digest. Use for frying, pickles and salads.

Peanut oil
Is ideal to use in Asian-style dishes . Depending on the brand, the flavour can range from mild and nutty to a more intensely flavoured oil. It has a high smoking point so is good to use for stir-fries and for deep-frying. Use for frying, marinades and dressings.

Macadamia nut oil
Has a delicate , nutty flavour. Drizzle over delicately flavoured dishes such as fish and vegetables.

Grape seed oil
I t is made from grape pips and ranges in colour from pale to dark green and has a delicate flavour. Use for frying and for salad dressings.

Peacan oil
Made from pecan nuts and has a mild nutty flavour. Use for dressings, drizzled on vegetables and for baking.

Sesame oil
Made from sesame seeds, it has a rich, nutty flavour that complements Asian-style dishes. When using it for frying, add a little sunflower, canola or peanut oil because the sesame flavour can be too strong if used a lone. It is also quite expensive. Use for frying, marinades and dressings.

Apricot kernel oil
A paley ellow oil extracted from the kernel of the apricot fruit. It is high in vitamins A and B. Use for salad dressings.

Walnut oil
Made from wa lnuts and high in polyunsaturated fatty acids, it h as an excellent flavour, but does not last long and should bestored in a cool place once opened. It is expensive, so use sparingly. Use it with either olive, sunflower or canola oil because walnut oil has a strong flavour, especially when baking. Use for dressings, baking and sauces.

- Ideas


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