Olive oil extraction, the traditional method: olive press
Olive oil extraction is the process of extracting the oil present in the olive drupes for food use. The oil is produced in the mesocarp cells, and stored in a particular type of vacuole called a lipovacuole, i.e., every cell contains a tiny olive oil droplet. Olive oil extraction is the process of separating the oil from the other fruit contents (vegetative extract liquid and solid material). This separation is attained only by physical means, i.e., oil and water don’t mix, so they are relatively easy to separate. This contrasts with other oils that are extracted with chemical solvents (generally hexane). The first operation when extracting olive oil is washing the olives, to reduce the presence of contaminants, especially soil which can create a particular flavour defect called "soil taste".
Wednesday, April 02, 2008