Dr. Bray Links

Friday, December 19, 2014

Cooking Oils

We know there are a lot of oils on our shelves! Here are a handful of our favorites, along with quick details on how they're made and the best ways to serve them:

Avocado Oil: Pressed from avocadoes, this smooth, nutty oil is more than 50% monounsaturated, making it a heart-nourishing choice. Use it in salad dressings or to sauté fish, chicken, sweet potatoes or plantains.

Canola Oil: Canola is actually a cousin to cabbage and Brussels sprouts. In fact, it's a variety of rapeseed that's part of the mustard family, which includes those above-mentioned veggies. It's beneficial for heart health thanks to its fatty acid profile and omega-3 and low saturated fat contents and perfect for light cooking, sauces and desserts like homemade mayo or tender cakes.

Coconut Oil: Pressed from the fruit of the coconut palm tree, coconut oil is ideal for light fair and subtly flavored dishes. This oil is particularly mouth-watering to use for making popcorn and hash browns.

Corn Oil: Most corn oil is extracted only from the germ of the corn kernel and is golden yellow in color; unrefined oil will have a darker color and richer corn taste. Use in salad dressings and dips with stronger flavors like peppers or garlic.

Grapeseed Oil: Grapeseed oil is extracted from the seeds of grapes, a byproduct of the wine-making industry. Use it on salads and raw veggies or in dips, sauces and salsas. Mix grapeseed oil with garlic and basil, then drizzle it on toasted bread.

Olive Oil: A mainstay of the Mediterranean diet and one of the oldest known culinary oils, olive oil contains predominately heart-friendly monounsaturated fat. Extra virgin olive oil results from the first cold-pressing of olives while mild "pure" olive oil is a blend of refined olive oil and extra virgin olive oil. Drizzle over hummus or grilled vegetables.

Peanut Oil: Peanut oil comes from where you'd expect…peanuts! It's relatively high monounsaturated content makes it heart-healthy. Peanut oil is superior for frying, light sautéing and stir-fries.

Sesame Oil: The seed of the sesame plant provides sesame oil, which has a high antioxidant content. Unrefined sesame oil is great as a key flavor component in sauces or dressings. Use refined sesame oil for high heat applications like frying and toasted sesame oil for stir fries and Asian sauces and dips. (Still need a little convincing? Lemon Sesame Asparagus will prove our point.)


Smoke Points:

225 F: Canola Oil, Unrefined
     : Flaxseed Oil, Unrefined
     : Safflower Oil, Unrefined
     : Sunflower Oil, Unrefined

320 F: Corn Oil, Unrefined
     : High-Oleic Sunflower Oil, Unrefined
     : Olive Oil, Unrefined
     : Peanut Oil, Unrefined
     : Safflower Oil, Semi-Refined
     : Soy Oil, Unrefined
     : Walnut Oil, Unrefined
325 F: Shortening, Emulsified Vegetable†
330 F: Hemp Seed Oil¥¥
350 F: Butter (Good Eats)
     : Canola Oil, Semi-Refined
     : Coconut Oil†
     : Sesame Oil, Unrefined
     : Soy Oil, Semi-Refined
356-370 F: Vegetable Shortening
361-401 F: Lard
375 F: Olive Oil (Good Eats)
389 F: Macadamia Nut Oil††

400 F: Canola Oil, Refined
     : Walnut Oil, Semi-Refined
406 F: Olive Oil, Extra Virgin*
410 F: Corn Oil (Good Eats)
     : Sesame Oil**
420 F: Cottonseed Oil†
     : Grapeseed Oil¥
     : Olive Oil, Virgin**
430 F: Almond Oil***
     : Hazelnut Oil***
435 F: Canola Oil (Good Eats)
438 F: Olive Oil*
     : Rapeseed Oil***
440 F: Peanut Oil†
     : Sunflower Oil†
450 F: Corn Oil, Refined
     : High-Oleic Sunflower Oil, Refined
     : Peanut Oil, Refined (Good Eats)
     : Safflower Oil, Ref. (Good Eats)
     : Sesame Oil, Semi-Refined
     : Soy Oil, Refined
     : Sunflower Oil, Semi-Refined
460 F: Olive Pomace Oil**
468 F: Olive Oil, Extra Light*
485 F: Grapeseed Oil**
495 F: Soy Bean Oil†

510 F: Safflower Oil†
520 F: Avocado Oil, Refined


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