October 15, 2017

Choosing a Healthy Cooking Oil

Choose, Healthy, cooking, Oil, fat, lard, butter, cold pressed vegetable oils, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil
By Published: 2017-10-15
Everyone wants to eat healthy, amirite?  We are what we eat and all that jazz.  Except it's not jazz at all but very really truly true.  But sometimes, no, wait, almost all the time, it's really hard to figure out what's going on.  One day you read that this type of food is really good for you.  Then, the next week, you read that that same food is really bad for you.  And...repeat...   What the heck's going on, supposed scientific world?!  

What that means for us of the non scientific world is that it's super hard to know what the heck is really good for you.  

One thing we've thought about quite a bit is the oil or fat that is used to cook our food.  Because if you think about it, some kind of fat or oil is used to cook all of our food.  So oil/fat is the common link across all kinds of diets, food cultures, food practices, etc.  It's in everything.  You can't cook or bake without it.  So we think that it's really really important that the cooking fat or oil that we use is a healthy one.

Choose, Healthy, cooking, Oil, fat, lard, butter, cold pressed vegetable oils, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil

  For a long, long time, well, since they invented things like margarine and oils chemically extracted at high heat and bleached by super machines, the governments and doctors and nutritionists in the world have been telling us that 'healthy' oils are not the fats that humans have been using for cooking ever since, well, the beginning, but rather 'healthy' was the new fats that manmade machines and technology had created.  And so we all went out and dutifully bought tubs of margarine, bottles of this and that highly processed oil, whatever was in the trend and labeled as the new 'healthy.'  We tried them all, just as most folks did. 

Choose, Healthy, cooking, Oil, fat, lard, butter, cold pressed vegetable oils, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil

And then, after some time of thinking and researching on what healthy fats really, really were, (something we thought was super important), we ended up, surprise, surprise, back to the basics, with lard and butter and cold pressed oils, all oils and fats that have been around forever.  And as I'm sure you all must have noticed, the winds lately have finally been shifting back and the governments and doctors and nutritionists in the world have started to say that, oops, it turns out that the traditional fats and oils are healthy after all.  That, my dear readers, is a big oops.

Choose, Healthy, cooking, Oil, fat, lard, butter, cold pressed vegetable oils, cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil

I'm not going to get into all the nitty gritty of the science behind all the fats and oils.  Suffice it to say that there are plenty of sources that explain it all in detail and I have read through them.  And then again, as I have already mentioned, the supposed sources seem to change their minds all the time.  One week good, next week bad.  What is one to do in this case?  I am neither scientist nor supposed scientist.  In the end I must rely rather on my logic and my common sense.  And it does seem to me that, more and more, the facts are backing up my logical conclusions.  




This is what we use for cooking oil/fat at The Hong Kong Cookery:

-Butter 
    -made from grass feed butter if we can get it

-Lard 
    -try it freshly made at home, see our how to make your own lard post
    -if you buy  lard from the store make sure it doesn't have 'hydrogenated lard' in it

-Cold pressed vegetable oils 
    -cold pressing avoids the high heat and chemical refining processes that destroy much of oil's goodness and balance (see a video of those refining processes here.  I don't know about you but I don't want to consume oil that has been through all that!)  Cold pressed is more expensive but worth it!  We like cold pressed sunflower oil for it's light, neutral taste and cold pressed avocado oil for it's high smoke point (great for deep fry) and its slightly nutty taste.  We also use first pressing peanut oil, so fragrant! and would totally love to use cold pressed roasted peanut oil if only we could get our grubby little hands on some here in Hong Kong.

    -a lovely slightly nutty flavor, great to cook eggs with, and we use it to make lotion as well!

-Extra virgin olive oil 
    -extra virgin olive is a great oil...if it really is extra virgin olive oil.  Look up 'olive oil scandal' and discover the great deception.  It seems at this point that you have to go straight to the olive oil farmer himself to get the real unadulterated stuff...sigh...

Our list is basically a list of fats/oils that have as little process done to them as possible.  If in doubt, just apply the principle of the least amount done.  And, yes, this means that most of the oils available at your local supermarket are seriously over refined and not 'healthy' at all.  But then that is because these oils were created to make some few folk a lot of money and not produced with our health in mind.  So we have to watch out for ourselves these days, that's the only way to do it.  Don't just believe us though, do your own cooking oil research and find out for yourself! 


Stay tuned for more on How to Make your Own Lard at home and enjoy your 'healthy' oils!




More Healthy Eats at The Hong Kong Cookery:

Hong Kong Organic MilkHong Kong Organic Milk 

Hong Kong honeyHong Kong Honey - Wing Wo Bee Farm 

chinese, chinese sausage, Cured, Lap Yuk, Pork Belly, preserved meat, preserved sausage, recipe, steamed, 蒸, 臘肉Steamed Chinese Cured Pork Belly Lap Yuk 蒸臘肉

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