Olive oil is rich in unsaturated fat and is also an anti-inflammatory, but all olive oils aren’t created equally. As you may have heard, not all imported olive oil is 100% pure olive oil because it’s mixed with other types of oils. It’s important to know what type of olive oil you’re purchasing. To avoid spoilage make sure to store olive oil away from heat, air, and light. Here is a quick guide on selecting oil for all of your cooking needs.
Extra virgin olive oil comes from the olive’s first cold press. The highest quality unrefined oil available; EVOO has a pure, fruity flavor and is best used for drizzling on salads, vegetables, and proteins and dipping bread into.
Organic olive oil is very similar to extra virgin in terms of how it’s made, the quality, and the flavor. The difference is that organic olive oil is made using only certified organic olives.
“Light” refers to flavor, not fat or calories. Light olive oil is a refined oil that has a high smoke point and neutral flavor, so it’s great for frying, sautéing, and baking.
If you need an all-purpose cooking oil, pure olive oil fits the bill. It’s a blend of virgin and refined oils, leaving it with a neutral taste.
“Work With What You Got!”
©Tiny New York Kitchen © 2018 All Rights Reserved
The orange carrot we know and love today came originally from Holland, but up until the Middle Ages, all carrots were purple. Gardeners often delight in such oddities, but you will be very lucky to find any purple specimens available in stores or supermarkets.
Carrots contain large amounts of carotene and vitamin A, along with useful amounts of vitamins B3, C and E. When eaten raw, they also provide potassium, calcium, iron and zinc, but these are partly destroyed with cooking.
Almost all vegetables have a better flavor if they are grown organically, but this is particularly true of carrots. If possible, buy organic ones, or look for the young, pencil-thin carrots that still have their feathery tops attached. These young carrots can be eaten raw, or steamed for a few minutes. Older carrots should be unblemished and feel firm. Carrots should not be stored for too long, but they will keep for several days in a cool airy place or in the salad drawer of the refrigerator.
The age of carrots is a guide to how they should be prepared. The valuable nutrients lies either in or just beneath the skin, so if the carrots are young, simply scrub them. Medium-size carrots may need to be scraped with a knife before cooking them and large carrots will need to be scraped or peeled. Carrots can be cooked or eaten raw. To eat raw, they can be cut into julienne strips and tossed with a dressing, or grated into salads and coleslaw. They can bee cooked in almost any way you choose. As an accompaniment, cut them into julienne strips and braise in butter and cider. Roasted carrots are delicious, with a melt-in-the-mouth sweetness. Par-boil large ones first, but younger carrots can be quickly blanched or added direct to the pan with a joint of meat.
“Work With What You Got!”
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved
Because peaches can grow in most of the United States, as long as they’re in season (May through early October) chances are you’ll be able to find organic peaches near you. Look for peaches with flesh that yields slightly to subtle pressure without bruising. Another good indicator of ripeness is the fruit’s background color, behind the red highlights. For yellow peaches (the more tart variety), the background should be a deep gold; for milder white peaches, give them a sniff – they should have a rich, sweet fragrance.
“Work With What You Got!
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved
The Vineyard Open Land Foundation maintains an organic cranberry bog in the hills of Lambert’s Cove. The bog is a rarity because only about 1 percent of the U.S. and Canada’s cranberries are grown organically. Old wooden machines are still used to harvest, winnow, and sort the berries.
“Work With What You Got!”
© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2015 All Rights Reserved
“Food, one assumes, provides nourishment; but Americans eat it fully aware that small amounts of poison have been added to improve its appearance and delay its putrefaction.” – John Cage
There has been quite a bit of controversy these days about eating organic. Recent studies state that it really doesn’t matter if you eat organic foods or not. When something is labeled organic, it usually means that a farm has not used pesticides and has taken considerable care to avoid any cross-contamination. Producing organic food undoubtedly costs more money which is passed on to the consumer. Buying organic tends to be quite a bit more expensive than buying non-organic.
Honestly, I don’t care what the studies are saying about eating organic versus eating non-organic. I would rather not put pesticides into my body as well as wanting to support farmers and food companies that are not using pesticides. I love going to farmers’ markets during the spring, summer and fall and when I am shopping in the grocery store I am willing to pay a bit more for organic food.
If you have decided not to buy organic here is a list of foods that have found to be the most and least contaminated.