Extra virgin olive oil is olive oil made from olives which were harvested that very same day and extracted through mechanical means, usually called Cold Pressing.
They are usually monocultivar, which means that they are made from a single type of olive, and there are well over eight hundred different types of olives; yeah, this
fact blew my mind away.
Extra virgin olive oil is defined as having a free acidity, expressed as oleic acid, of not more than 0.8 grams per 100 grams. It has to be free of defects as well as
there are maximums and minimums on a number of other points, such as levels of peroxide.
You should not cook food with EVOO at all, as it destroys the beauty of the product and you lose many of its special medicinal properties.
EVOO contains a molecular compound called oleocanthals, and this compound is known to fight against prostate and colon cancer, stave off neurological diseases such as
Alzheimer's, and also prevent heart attacks. Mind you, this is with daily consumption of several tablespoons of the good stuff.
It's one of the oldest agricultural products in the world, and you can see examples of it written in literature throughout the ages. EVOO is so precious, that of course
people have sought to cash in on it by making fraudulent stand-ins, as well as selling something else other than EVOO to the uninitiated. Not too long ago there was a great
study done in the United States that discovered that upwards of 80% of what is labeled at extra virgin olive oil on the shelves of American stores is not actually EVOO!
Yup, that company which you have been trusting for pasta and gravy has been selling you schlock!
Instead of me trying to prove to you what's so special about EVOO and trying to encapsulate everything, it's easier for me to let you see what some of the best organizations
in the world have to say about it.