Frying in olive oil? No problem!
The story that it is better not to heat olive oil has been circulating for years, but actually this is a myth. It is perfectly fine to heat it up to 207 degrees Celsius and it is even healthy. On the other hand, we only recommend frying with lower-quality olive oil. Because we simply think it is a waste of good quality extra virgin olive oil. Anyway, we’re going to fry in olive oil!
Is heating extra virgin olive oil healthy?
Extra virgin olive oil is the purest and most natural oil among the different types that exist. This olive oil is very healthy thanks to the bioactive substances, fatty acids and antioxidants present. The taste and smell are strongest when consumed cold in, for example, a salad or on bread, but the taste of the extra virgin olive oil also comes into its own with warm dishes such as French fries in the oven. Even the most insensitive tongue cannot deny this.
We Dutch are used to frying in butter or fat. But actually frying in olive oil is healthy(er) and just as ‘permitted’. This is apparent from scientific research: ‘Effect of cooking on olive oil quality attributes’. Be careful not to let the temperature of the olive oil get extremely high. Above 207 degrees Celsius, PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) can be released, which may have an unhealthy effect. This does not apply to regular olive oil.
Frying in olive oil
Olive oil contains many monounsaturated fatty acids, which have only one double bond. Like saturated fats, monounsaturated fats can also withstand heat. One study found that olive oil can be used in a deep fryer for more than 24 hours before it really oxidizes. In theory, this would be a great choice for frying. But the taste and smell of olive oil can sometimes become less pleasant after prolonged heating.
If you do want to deep-fry, choose for refined oils. They already lack all the substances and minerals that make extra virgin olive oil so healthy. In addition, they have a higher smoke (burning) point, are cheaper and can be thrown away immediately after one use.
In short: can you fry in olive oil? Yes, but pay attention to which olive oil you use and how often you heat this oil. One thing we know 100 percent for sure: extra virgin olive oil – Gkazas Olive Oil – is the best olive oil and adds a characteristic flavor to your dish!