In the Mediterranean region frying is one of the oldest cooking ways and a way of life. Sliced zucchini, eggplant, and potato, fish, cheese, bread, fresh herbs and pastry ribbons are wonderful fried in olive oil.
Although frying in extra virgin olive oil tastes better, it really doesn’t have to be. The lower antioxidants and oleic acid in the regular olive oils, makes them more stable to moderate high heat. So you don’t have to break the bank using extra virgin.
When frying in olive oil the moisture is sealed in, developing a crispy crust and doesn’t let the oil penetrate into the food. It is a dry cooking process that holds all the vitamins in the food.
Very thin sliced vegetables fried in olive oil make extra ordinary chips. Another great result of that “liquid gold”. Here are a few tips for best results on frying in olive oil:
The temperature shouldn’t exceed 360 degrees Fahrenheit and heated slowly. When the food is ready, it should be taken out with a slotted spoon and placed on wired racks over paper towels and not directly on the paper. The fried food reabsorbs the drained oil. Do not salt food before frying, because the salt draws out water and makes it soggy. Salt food after. Use heavy stainless steel and cast iron pots, because they hold heat very well.
I remember my mother when she finished frying, she fried a piece of bread in the oil. She said that clarifies the oil. Then she strained the oil through a cheese cloth, and unlikely raw olive oil, she refrigerated it. It is safe to use the same olive oil to fry in, up to four times.