Extra virgin oliveoil

olive oil

Virgin olive oil, and extra virgin olive oil, (comes from virgin oil produc-tion only, contains no more than 0.8% acidity) is produced by simply crushing olives and extracting the juice in a press or centrifuge. Virgin olive oils contain the highest levels of polyphenols, antioxidants that have been linked with better health. All of the other grades, such as "pure" and "olive oil," are refined using high heat and chemical processing, in the same way other cook-ing oils are.3 million tons of olive oil is produced around the world each year, which equates to about 445ml for each one of us. Are you using your share? There are at least fifty different varieties of olive, each with its own distinct characteristics. In Greece, there are an estimated 120,000,000 olive trees and 350,000 Greek families involved in olive tree cultivation. Extra Virgin olive oil accounts for less than 10% of oil in many producing countries; the percentage is far higher in the Mediterranean countries (Greece: 80%, Italy: 45%, Spain 30%). Olive oil is a staple of the Mediterranean diet and it has a posi-tive health impact on heart, cancer, stress and blood pressure symptoms.



5 Ways to Eat Like a Greek

The traditional Greek diet circa 1960 is considered one of the healthiest, if not the healthiest diet, in the world. It served as the basis of the Mediterranean diet as we know it today. Let's see 5 healthy habits of the Greeks.

1. Cook your vegetables in olive oil

According to the CDC only 26% of adults in the U.S. eat vegetables 3 times a day. On the other hand, other statistics show that Greeks consume about 17 oz. (500 grams) of fruits and vegetables a day.

How do Greeks manage to eat over a pound of fruits and vegetables every day? Well, they cook their vegetables. Sure, they eat salads and have plenty of vegetarian appetizers, but the vegetarian main course is what really sets them apart. Even today most Greeks consume vegetables as a main dish 2-3 times a week.

When I say cook, I don't mean a plate of boring, boiled vegetables with a lump of butter or melted cheese. These dishes, called lathera, which means "the ones in oil," are a combination of vegetables, herbs, tomatoes and olive oil. Common vegetables used are green beans, peas, eggplants, leeks, artichokes, cauliflowers and okra. One serving is a large plate, which is about 3 servings of vegetables. Eat it with some bread and a chunk of feta and you're set.

Spoon sweets (γλυκό του κουταλιού)

What is the "Spoon sweets" (γλυκό του κουταλιού 'sweet of the spoon') are popular in Greece and Cyprus, usually served with Greek coffee and a glass of cold water. Most are made of whole fruit, though some kinds are made of pieces or purees. One typically Greek spoon sweet is the snow-white and intensely aromatic vaníllia (βανίλια, [v...a'nilja]) which is not made of vanilla, but of mastic resin, for which the Aegean island of Chios is famous. This is usually served as a spoonful of sweet on a table spoon dropped into a tall glass of ice-cold water and popularly called "βανίλια υποβρύχιο", a "vanilla submarine". It is a thick, white, sweet paste made industrially by beating mastic resin with table sugar. When cold, it has the consistency of hard caramel candy: it is meant to be licked like a lollipop as, at body temperature, it gradually becomes softer and more chewable. The Greek diaspora introduced this treat to other countries as far away as Japan.