Are you interested in learning how to make olive oil? There are many types of olive oil and some are extremely healthy and should be added to your diet daily. Making olive oil cannot be done at home and it will take a special press to extract the oil. After the olive oil is extracted, it will be good for up to six months in a sealed container that is kept in a dark closet.
- Different Types of Olive Oil. There are three main kinds of olive oil. The best olive oil is cold pressed and it is called extra virgin olive oil. It is good for salads and dipping and light sautéing only. Extra virgin olive oil burns at 320 degrees and becomes toxic. Virgin olive oil can be used for cooking or light frying with and extra light olive is merely regular oil with a hint of olive oil and should not be used.
- Harvesting Olives. Usually in November, families will start to harvest the olive crop. This takes lots of work as all the olives must be picked, even from the tip of the trees. Normally a long stick is used to shake the branches. Large plastic sheets or nets are placed under the trees to catch all the olives.
- Cleaning the Olives. After the olives are picked and harvested, you must remove the leaves and pieces of branches. It is not necessary to wash the olives, because the place squeezing your olives will wash them first. The olives should be pressed within 24 hours of picking.
- How Many Olives Do You Need? It takes about four to five kilos of olives to make one liter of olive oil. So many times, one tree will produce only one liter of olive oil. Olive oil is very expensive for this reason.
- Cold Pressing Procedure. Extra virgin olive oil is best when it is cold pressed without any heating or processing. Cold pressing is simply mashing the olives to a pulp and then placing the pulp on circular mats which are then pressed.
- Separating the Oil. Let the oil set for at least one hour and then skin off the oil from the top. Sediment of the processing will settle to the bottom and should not be used. Seal the oil in large containers that are dark and covered.
- Virgin Olive Oil. Virgin olive oil is processed the same cold pressed way. Virgin olive oil is merely olives used that have ripen more. The difference in the color of the olives depends on how ripe they are. The first olives used for extra virgin olive oil are green.