August 6, 2021 11:00:55 am
In the pandemic, we have seen some major changes in the food consumption pattern. More people have become health conscious and switched to items that can supplement their well-being and reduce visits to the hospital.
In the work-from-home scenario, cooking habits have also changed. For instance, earlier olive oil was mainly used for baking moist cakes, making salad dressings, or for cooking continental dishes. Now, with its variants available in the market, the consumption pattern of the kitchen essential cooking oil has also seen a drastic shift.
Akshay Modi, the joint managing director of Modi Naturals Ltd, says while olive oil is recognised for its health benefits — lower cholesterol, better for heart, immunity booster, and lighter to digest — Indians are still skeptical of using it in their everyday cooking.
“The main reason for this being lack of information about the olive oil variants, each of which are suitable for different purposes. The first cold press helps derive extra virgin olive oil. It has a distinct flavour and aroma, but it cannot tolerate heat and is suitable for raw consumption, making it ideal for salad dressings and dips.
“The pulp of olive that’s left after extracting extra virgin olive oil from the fruit is called olive pomace. There are many myths surrounding this oil with respect to Indian cooking,” he says.
1. Olive pomace oil isn’t healthy
Fact: Olive pomace oil is 80 per cent monounsaturated that can lower cholesterol levels. Monounsaturated fats are healthy fats with fatty acid profile like other olive oils found in avocados and certain nuts. It is also rich in antioxidants that promote heart health and prevent many lifestyle diseases, making it a healthy cooking oil choice. With today’s advanced techniques, olive pomace oil brings the additional benefit of vitamin E for better immunity and tissue repair with vitamin K for better bone density and health.
2. Olive pomace oil can’t stand heat
Fact: Extra virgin olive oil is the variant that can’t stand heat. Olive pomace oil has a high heat tolerance and doesn’t lose any of its nutrients despite that. Hence, it is ideal for all cooking purposes.
3. Olive pomace oil isn’t suitable for sautéing and frying
Fact: It can not only stand heat but also has a high smoking point, making it suitable for all forms of Indian cooking, including deep-frying. With this oil, a little goes a long way as it spreads well and is absorbed less compared to most other oils.
4. Olive pomace oil has a peculiar taste
Fact: Extra virgin olive oil has a distinct aroma and taste, but olive pomace oil has a fairly neutral taste. It will not change the flavour of the dish just like other neutral flavoured oils. However, it’s much healthier than its alternatives.
A lot of health-conscious individuals have started adopting olive pomace oil as their regular cooking oil; are you among them?
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