Master Chef Talks Olive Oil

Olive Oil Times spoke with Italian master chef, Massimiliano Alajmo, often called ‘the Mozart of the stove’ due to his simple yet unique style of cooking where, of course, extra virgin olive figures very predominantly. Alajmo feels olive oil has a lot of innovative potential because it holds aromas better than butter especially when it is combined with water. Consequently he uses olive oil for a lot of his sauces replacing butter and other dairy products like cream. He is able to achieve a creamy consistency without using dairy which makes his sauces and pastries easier to digest. His three choices if he were on a deserted island: olive oil, bread, and wine. “It’s a combination of freshness, the sacred and strength,” he says.

We have found that it is much easier to make a roux with extra virgin olive oil than with butter. The flour dissolves much more easily without clumping. Also olive oil has a much higher smoking point than butter so it does not burn or bubble when making the roux.

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