The phenomenon of olive oil distortion is becoming more common nowadays. The most common method is to blend extra virgin olive oil with sunflower oil or others with even worse quality. Nowadays a test on olive oil is a must and should be done by each and everyone. But the greatest thing is that you can do the test yourself !!
Thus we will give you three basic guiding steps, that enables you to discern the quality of the oil that you buy …
Basic principle: “Oil is understood by the nose and tongue. Not with the throat »
Let’s get it started
1. Smell the olive oil and discern its aroma
A good way to get all the fragrances of olive oil free is to shake the package just before we open it. Then you should approach our nose to the spout of the
container and literally try, with half-closed or closed eyes, to “sup” its aroma in two or three successional inhalations. Let your imagination run and form mental images. If the oil is fresh, it will overwhelm you with vibrant aromas of olive and nature, like it has just come out from the olive oil press. Those with a heightened sense of smelling, its fragrances could remind you fruit’s aroma.
Note: If the scents are pleasant, you will not stop to smell!
If you get annoying odor that remind you of mold, rancid cheese, old or burnt oil or even dirt, then start being cautious with the “oil” you are about to buy because it is neither too virgin nor fresh.
2. Taste it and understand its quality
Put olive oil in a small glass. The method of testing the oil with the finger is not capable of safe conclusions. Make sure that the oil is not frozen during the test. This is why we hug the glass with our palms for 1-2 minutes to raise its temperature and release more oil fragances. Then try with small sips and fill your mouth with your tongue. Begin to feel the flavors first in your tongue and then in your palate, for a maximum of 2 seconds before swallowing it.
Your taste must be dominated by a ”soupy” feeling, with a constant alternation of bittersweetness. When olive oil, that is, derived from green fruit, is dominated by the bitter-spicy-peppery taste then it is characteristic of the “Koroneiki” variety.
Note: The bitter-spicy-pepper flavor is a characteristic of extra virgin olive oils and is by no means a defect.
On the contrary, you should know that extra virgin olive oils that have this taste are not only more durable but contain more valuable ingredients such as polyphenols which are also responsible for the light burning in the throat.
If you feel a strong and unbearable bitter taste in your mouth, such as when you swallow a bitter drug or grapefruit without sugar, then it is anything but extra virgin olive oil and it is best to avoid it.
3. The olive oil color can show you its freshness
While color is not a direct criterion of the quality of the olive oil, however, we understand whether the olive oil comes from a fresh crop. The color, is either greenish or golden yellow, and in the fresh olive oil is very intense, vivid and vibrant with a slight refraction when illuminated, like a mild blur (not turbidity).
Conversely, if the oil has been exposed to high temperatures, especially in summer, the color becomes obsolete and its consistency is weakened. The oil becomes so transparent that you can see through the bottle, like it is a colored water.