In cooking, we use a variety of oil and vinegar, and they each have their own unique uses.
I like to have a range of different oil and vinegar to help compliment my cooking, as well as enhance it.
But which ones are best to use?
It all depends on the type of dish we’re cooking.
Below, I break down the essential oil and vinegar bottles you should have in your kitchen and how to use them.
Oils can be used for cooking as well as served cold in dishes like salads.
You’ll most likely use one type of oil for your cooking, but it’s good to have a small selection on hand.
Oils have different smoking points so it’s important to know which oils you can use for various dishes.
If you burn your oil, it can ruin the taste of your cooking.
My favorite in particular are extra virgin olive oils.
My go-to oil.
The Arab in me always defaults to olive oil because it’s delicious and very versatile.
Olive oil is a fantastic source of healthy fats that are much needed in your diet.
I like to use olive oil in most of my cooking.
You’ll experience that it’s perfect for sauteing and for grilling vegetables.
An endless choice of combinations are available to you with olive oil for salad dressings.
More classically in the Middle East, we like to drizzle olive oil on a variety of dishes.
Hummus being the most popular.
It’s also fantastic for dipping bread in.
Olive oil flavors vary from country to country.
You can read here about the different types of olive oil.
Most vegetables have a high smoke point, which makes this the ideal oil for dishes like stir frys and general frying.
If a baking recipe requires oil, this would be the most appropriate one to use.
It doesn’t have much of a flavor but this works well in dishes where you want to avoid adding more flavor.
If you’re experimenting with Asian cuisine, this is a delicious addition.
Try adding it to stir-frys, marinades or sauces.
Coconut oil was championed as a healthy alternative for baking and cooking, but recent research has been challenging its status.
Regardless, it is an ideal oil alternative to use in baking.
With its neutral taste, it’s a good oil to generally use.
This has increased in popularity recently and I can see why.
Perfect on salads, it adds a smooth and nutty flavor to your dish.
Most people think of the standard white vinegar but there’s a wide variety of vinegars that each add their own flair to cooking.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking vinegars just belong in salad dressings.
They are an ideal counterpart of vegetables and fruit in enhancing flavor.
Red Wine Vinegar
An ideal choice for salads and marinades.
White Wine Vinegar
This has a fruity flavor compared to its red sibling.
It’s also less punchy which makes it perfect for lighter vinaigrettes.
An additional benefit is that it won’t change the color of the dishes, unlike red wine vinegar.
One of my favorite vinegars!
It’s sweet and syrupy taste is delightful in the dishes it marries.
Like olive oils, balsamic vinegars range widely in quality and price.
You won’t regret it.
The most popular component to make is a balsamic vinaigrette for salads.
But I like to go past this and boil it down to a thick syrup which I use to glaze over meat.
Apple Cider Vinegar
This is the golden child of the health food movement so I’m sure you’ve at least heard of this vinegar.
It’s incredibly versatile and can be utilised in dishes ranging from dressings to marinades.
In particular, it makes a delicious partner for pork based dishes.
It can also be a good addition to your baking toolkit.
Because of its sweet and fruity flavor, and its ability to puff up baking, it makes sense to choose it.
I’ve become more familiar with rice vinegar over the previous year as I’ve experimented with more Asian cooking.
In particular, dishes from ‘Japan: The Cookbook’.
Ideal for pickling, marinades and dipping sauces.
If you’d like to delve further into Japanese cooking, rice vinegar is essential for making the most delicious sushi rice.
Which oil and vinegar are your favorite to use?