While every­one wants the health ben­e­fits of olive oil, many of us still rel­ish the taste of but­ter.

The crav­ing may well link back to the food rationing that occurred from 1940 through 1954 (in the UK), where a weekly allowance of the golden knob was a mea­ger 2 ounces.

Joseph Goebbels’ war time com­ment often mis­quoted as “Guns before but­ter” meant a lack of but­ter also became asso­ci­ated, in people’s minds, with the eco­nomic depri­va­tions of World War II.

Brought up on such rations it is unsur­pris­ing that par­ents of baby boomers indulged their chil­dren in what had once been a restricted plea­sure.

While there has been a health push in the suc­ceed­ing decades for the use of veg­etable oils and more recently to the enlight­ened health ben­e­fits of olive oil, it is dif­fi­cult for British stock, whether they live in Britain, America or Australia to stray away from the taste and plea­sures ingrained in their dietary palate since child­hood.

Hence their crav­ing for, if not actu­ally their daily prac­tice of, con­sum­ing com­fort foods, such as hot but­tered toast, mounds of mashed pota­toes with rivulets of but­ter or the adding of a knob of but­ter to improve the palata­bil­ity of boiled veg­eta­bles.

It may fly in the face of dietary guide­lines but we seem quick to quote the dairy industry’s well-tar­geted slo­gan, “but­ter tastes bet­ter.” And while gen­er­a­tions of Southern Europeans are accus­tomed to the rich and ful­fill­ing taste of olive oil, British descen­dants are likely to con­tinue crav­ing their but­ter fix.

A num­ber of olive oil pro­duc­ers are opt­ing to pro­vide this group with not only what they want, but also what they need — EV00 with all its health-giv­ing prop­er­ties, but one that tastes like but­ter.

While true olive oil con­nois­seurs cringe at the sac­ri­lege of tam­per­ing with the tastes of good olive oil, oth­ers see it as an impor­tant mar­ket­ing strat­egy and an oppor­tu­nity to sell their prod­uct to those most in need of the health ben­e­fits of the good oil.

One such com­pany is Isabelina Trading Company (ITC), a UK-based com­pany that has cre­ated a lac­tose-free olive oil that tastes like but­ter. It is mar­keted as Isabelina Gold.

They import their olives from a sup­plier in Spain and make Isabelina Gold by remov­ing the fla­vor mol­e­cule from lac­tose-free but­ter and adding them to extra vir­gin olive oil.

They claim their prod­uct is “the first olive oil in the world to be nat­u­rally blended with the fla­vor mol­e­cules of real but­ter, instead of but­ter­milk, plant extract or chem­i­cal fla­vor­ing, to offer a nutri­tious cook­ing expe­ri­ence with low lev­els of sat­u­rated fat.”

They also adver­tise their oil as a per­fect replace­ment to be used in such British fare as scram­bled eggs, to be driz­zled on toast as well as for good old Yorkshire pud­dings

They enlisted celebrity chef, Pete Zulu who is fea­tured on YouTube pan-fry­ing scal­lops using Isabelina Gold. Zulu is the owner of a dis­tinctly English pub, The Black Horse Inn in West Boldon, although it is a gourmet des­ti­na­tion that also offers inter­na­tional cui­sine.

A num­ber of olive oil sup­pli­ers also adver­tise some of their (non-fla­vored) EVOOs as sweet and but­tery. The Australian Olive Company describes one as hav­ing a “mildly but­tery fin­ish, ideal for bak­ing and cook­ing.”

Here are some tips for using extra vir­gin olive oil as a but­ter alter­na­tive:

- Using a spray bot­tle, spray onto hot pop­corn
 — Use on veg­eta­bles such as corn on the cob or added to new pota­toes or mash.
 — Put a small amount into rice while cook­ing to fluff it up and give it a but­tery fla­vor.
 — Brush onto bread such as gar­lic bread, Panini, baguettes, English muffins)
 — Refrigerate in a bowl and then spread it over toast or rolls.
 — Use it for fry­ing or scram­bling eggs
 — Use instead of melted but­ter in bak­ing (i.e. cakes, muffins, cook­ies). The rule of thumb is 3/​4 of a cup of olive oil to replace 1 cup of but­ter

 



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