Kinds

Corn oil is widely used in dressings. It has a light golden color and is nearly tasteless, except for a very mild cornmeal-type flavor.

Cottonseed oil, soybean oil, canola oil, and safflower oil are bland, nearly tasteless oils. Vegetable oil or salad oil is a blend of oils and is popular because of its neutral flavor and relatively low cost.

Peanut oil has a mild but distinctive flavor and may be used in appropriate dressings. It is somewhat more expensive.

Olive oil has a distinctive, fruity flavor and aroma and a greenish color.The best olive oils are called virgin or extra-virgin, which means they are made from the first pressing of the olives. Because of its flavor, olive oil is not an all-purpose oil but may be used in specialty salads such as Caesar salad.

Walnut oil has a distinctive flavor and a high price. It is occasionally used in fine restaurants featuring specialty salads. Other nut and seed oils, such as hazelnut oil and grapeseed oil, are sometimes used.

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