In this podcast, we take a dive into the culinary world and explore where there is a lot of “fake food” out there. From doctored extra virgin olive oils and grated cheese to wine and balsamic vinegar, we give you the real news on fake food. Topics we cover: • How we’ve had a few podcast fans visit this year, including Kendra and her new business: www.vida.wine • How often we don’t realize the wool is being pulled over our eyes in regards to food. Here’s a list. Do you have others? Let us know in the comments. Extra Virgin Olive Oil • The corrupt world of extra virgin olive oil and the struggles we face with that. It is definitely a fake food most times. • This book covers this topic extensively. Check it out: Extra Virginity • How by Italian law that even if the olives come from a different country, as long as the oil is bottled in Italy it is allowed to be called “Italian Olive Oil” • How producers from Tuscany come down to Puglia and buy Puglia olives, then bottle extra virgin olive oil in Tuscany and call it Tuscan olive oil • How our extra virgin olive oil is really just freshly squeezed olives • We’ve covered this subject a couple of times in past episodes. Check out: — Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Everything you always wanted to know and never knew to ask — How to tell if your extra virgin oil is really extra virgin — Why your Italian "food" may not be real food And click here to sign up for our email course explaining more on how to tell if your extra virgin olive oil is really extra virgin. Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription. There was an error submitting your subscription. Please try again. Email Address Subscribe Coffee • Paul wonders why whole bean coffee costs less than ground coffee • Paul believes there must be other additives to make it cost less • After doing a little research, I think there may be other reasons: Namely, inferior beans. Here's what one site had to say: "Whole bean coffees come from better lots, because it’s impossible to hide negative qualities in a bag of whole bean coffee. Much of the coffee’s aromas and flavors are released when it’s ground. Therefore, customers who purchase whole bean coffee and grind it at home will notice the coffee’s nuanced qualities — regardless of whether they are good or bad. In comparison, coffee that’s pre-ground has already lost many of its aromatics and flavors by the time the customer purchases it. Thus, it’s not as important to use beans that are highly flavorful and aromatic when selling pre-ground coffee. Roasters that offer ground selections can get away with using lower-quality beans." • Does anyone have any insight? Let us know in the comments! • How Paul had a work colleague was bragging about how he makes coffee pods that have 75% pure coffee grounds in the pods Parmesan Cheese • We did a whole podcast on this here: Why your Italian "food" may not be real food • How Parmesan actually is legally allowed to have cellulose (wood pulp) in every jar. Supposedly it is a safe anti-clumping additive when it is only 2-4% of a product. But FDA investigations found 8.8% in some! In some cases ,the cheese was less than 40% of the product! Wal-Mart has now be slapped with a lawsuit over selling a product labeled as 100% Grated Parmesan but had 7.8% wood pulp! Truffle oil • How Paul bought some fresh truffles a few years ago and we made truffle oil • But then we discovered this can be very very dangerous, and only last 2-3 days • This sight https://www.idratherbeachef.com/how-to-make-truffle-oil/ goes into it a bit more: "When you make fresh truffle oil as demonstrated in this post, it has a VERY limited shelf life of two, maybe three days maximum. I suggest making it in small batches to ensure all the oil may be used quickly. Fresh truffle oil has a limited shelf life due to the oil not being brought and held 212 degrees Fahrenheit, which is the temperature that kills botulism and other bacteria which thrive in an anaerobic environment. Learn more about botulism from homemade canned, preserved or fermented foods. The truffle oil isn’t brought to 212 degrees because the truffle would start to toast and produce strange flavors. We want truffle oil to embody the essence of the truffle itself, not taste like burnt mushrooms." • In other words, the extra virgin olive oil you are using to make your truffle oil is only brought up so a low heat to infuse the oil. This low heat infuses the oil but it not hot enough to kill botulism. If it was brought up to that heat it would burn the truffles. • So unless a chef is making truffle oil as a special for a few nights meals, don't think any Truffle Oil has any real truffles in it. Making it a real fake food. Wine • You can find really cheap wines sometimes • So when you see something labeled as "Red Wine" is there a rule that says it has to be made with grapes? • Well, according to the legal definitely, wine's legal definition is according to https://definitions.uslegal.com/w/wine-trade/ is: "Wine refers to any fermented alcoholic beverage and is generally made from grapes or other fruit. It is mainly used for nonindustrial use." • Also, wines if they are below 11% alcohol content, you do no have to specify what is in the wine on the label. Chili Peppers • We talk a little about our chili crop this year • Paul talks about he believes they put red dye in chili flakes • You also have no idea how long the chili flakes have been sitting in the bag Balsamic Vinegar • What real balsamic vinegar is all about • How regular vinegars are made versus balsamic vinegars • This is one of what our vendor explained about IGP for balsamic vinegars • Why it's only made in Modena There is 2 different types of IGP. - Industrial IGP produce in Steel silos in maximum 2 month. And in This balsamic vinegar is a mix of vinegar, strong balsamic vinegar, caramel to thicken and colored the balsamic vinegar. And in this silos is put this mix for 2 month to Repose. In the bottom of this silos is “easy found” wood sawdust, to give the effect of the olded balsamic vinegar and the taste of wood. See the steel silos in the pic(this is industrial) Is to easy and quick to obtain the product but is not the original. Is easy to found in all store and supermarket. Especially abroad - Artigianal IGP (MY BALSAMIC VINEGAR) produce, respect the product specification, and the old process of production. Is put in different wooden barrel of different wood (oak, chestnut, mulberry, juniper, cherry, locust, ash). This is the barrel use also for DOP (after I explain the DOP ), but there isn’t a battery set (you chose of two different type of barrel) and put the vinegar, with cooked must, to grow old in this barrel, for minimum 5/6 years. And my grandfather They taught to me, “Is impossible buy the time”. You see the picture with wood barrel. - The DOP is the best of Balsamic vinegar. The product specification, is very strong like Artigianal IGP. You have a wooden barrel, composed to minimum 5 bottle( Example my battery barrel is composed to 5 bottle, you see in 3 pic.) and is possible arrive to the maximum with 12 barrel. Is possible compose your battery with this wood(oak, chestnut, mulberry, juniper, cherry, locust, ash). There is long process to obtain the certification of your wooden Battery, by competent persons and public authority,. And you obtain the first Balsamic vinegar, in 2 step . Step 1 is 12 year old, is called “Affinato” you take a maximum 10 % to the bottle (the little one) which composed your Wooden battery, and after you bring this balsamic vinegar in a special place (Consortium Balsamic Vinegar D.O.P.) when the people check it (see in database when you are register your wooden battery). And in this place The competent person put your balsamic vinegar, in the “Giuggiaro bottle”. Step 2 is 25 year old, is called “extravecchio” “extraold” the process is the same of the 12 year old balsamic vinegar, but you attend 25 years to take it. Vitamins • If you don't know, most vitamins are filled with fillers, like silica (sand) • Check the inactive ingredients on any vitamins and you will see they filled with tons of things that are not vitamins • And for their Vitamin D, they use our extra virgin olive oil as a carrier inside the vitamin • You can check out Pure Vitamin Club here. Skim Milk • We argue a bit about is if really fake or not for consideration in this episode • To Paul's point, they have taken all the good stuff out and now it's really just colored water • How we only buy whole milk here at the villa • The podcast Steven mentioned: Food: A Cultural Culinary History Podcast • Also, how white bread is so over processed that it losses all it's vitamins, so they have to add the vitamins back in. But how if they just didn't over process it, they would have all those vitamins to begin with. Ham & Turkey • How most of the ham and turkey you use to make cold cuts is all the remnants of the original animals "glued" back together • That's also called a pressed ham • The different between prosciutto and and prosciutto crudo Baby Carrots • How these are just deformed carrots that are cut down and treated to make baby carrots • About the guy who invented them, and his other products Bunny Balls • Paul argues that they are "fake" because they lead you to believe they are grown to be small • The multicolored carrots we get here in Puglia • Why carrots are mostly orange • And why the Irish hate the color orange on St. Patrick's Day Juice • How you really have to check the labels, especially if doesn't say 100% of whatever fruit you are buying. • Most might say 100% juice, but it's a mix of all kinds of different juices, not just the "orange juice" you think you are buying Tea Bags • Paul has seen a lot in the news lately about all the bad thing being found in tea bags. Scallops • Most scallops are not real scallops, but pressed together fish This is the shellac picture I was talking about. • How I used to add wax to chocolate when making peanut butter balls with my mother. I assumed it was to skip the tempering process. Does anyone know? Let us know in the comments. • Why eggs are sold non-refrigerated in Italy but sold refrigerated in the states. And here's our spicy products we talked about. To sum up our Real New, Fake Food podcast. Look for real food from the fresh food aisle, not processed food. And be sure to read your labels. What do you think? Did we miss a fake food? Let us know in the comments!