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French Cooking Oil

French Cooking Oil

Cooking oil production areas

The main areas of cooking oil production in France are for rapeseed oil -  Centre, Burgundy, Lorraine, Picardie and Champagne-Ardenne, and for the sunflower oil - Poitou-Charentes and Midi-Pyrenees.

The olive trees are grown mainly in the four regions of the Mediterranean Basin: Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, Languedoc-Roussillon, Rhone-Alps and Corsica.

In France, there are eight olive oil appellations of origin (AOC) as regulated by the French law:

  • Olive oil Corsica - Olio di Corsica: straw yellow oil characterized by its sweetness on the palate and aromas of dried fruits and Corsica’s maquis (shrubs covering a good part of the island)
  • Olive oil Nîmes: green oil marked by the predominance of the Picholine variety with aromas of red fruit and garrigue (Languedoc-Roussillon)
  • Olive oil from the Valley of Baux-de-Provence: oil with fruity flavor (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur)
  • Olive oil from Aix-en-Provence: oil with aromas of fresh cut hay, green apples, tomato plant, artichoke (Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur)
  • Olive oil from Haute-Provence: yellow oil with green reflections, fine and fresh with notes of butter, hazelnut and fresh artichoke (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur)
  • Olive oil from Nice: sweet oil with aromas of ripe apple, hazelnut and almond (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur)
  • Olive oil from Provence (Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur)
  • Olive oil from Nyons oil gold, soft, very fine, with aromas of hazelnut, almond, cut hay and apple (Rhône-Alpes)

 

Above all, oils add flavor and creaminess to French dishes. Seed oils, such as sunflower or rapeseed are generally neutral in taste but exalt the flavors of your preparations in enhancing the taste of food: in the pan, casserole, baked, deep-fried. For braising, steaming, stir frying, roasting, grilling, frying vegetables, meat and fish, you can also flavor oils by adding herbs de Provence, basil, shallot . Without oil,  no mayonnaise, no salad dressing, no aioli or no marinade! As you combine vinegars and oils, you combine the flavors. 

Flavor of olive oil can be used both raw in salad dressings or in place of butter in pasta, or in cooking meat or vegetables.