What oil is good for Indians

Frying oils: Caution: hot and greasy!

Dipl. Oec. troph. Nadine Lämmerhirt

At the roast meat Potato fritters or deep-frying French fries can get pretty hot. So that no toxic substances are created, it comes down to this correct fat at.

If fats and oils are heated to high temperatures, harmful and in some cases also carcinogenic decomposition products such as benzene or formaldehyde can arise. If you want to avoid this, you should use fats that are heat-stable for sizzling. After all, up to 180 ° C is reached when deep-frying and up to 200 ° C when frying in the pan. When searing steaks or preparing them in a wok, the temperature can quickly climb higher. How long a fat can withstand the heat depends on its composition. The more saturated fatty acids there are, the higher the smoke point. This describes the temperature at which a fat begins to smell sticky, smoke and decompose. A high proportion of monounsaturated oleic acid also gives fat greater heat resistance. This is because oleic acid is less susceptible to oxidative decomposition than polyunsaturated fatty acids, which predominate in most vegetable oils such as sunflower, walnut or safflower oil.

The production makes the difference

In the conventional production of vegetable fats, fruits, seeds or kernels are chopped or ground, heated and pressed with high pressure. This hot pressing usually results in temperatures around 100 ° C, but sometimes up to 170 ° C. The remaining oil is then extracted from the remaining press cake using solvents such as hexane or benzene. In order to separate the solvent from the oil again, the mixture is heated up to 140 ° C. The crude oil obtained in this way is cloudy, often dark and usually has a scratchy aftertaste. This is why it is degummed, deacidified, decolored in several stages at high temperatures through so-called refining and finally freed from unpleasant smells and flavors using steam. Among other things, free fatty acids and naturally occurring fat accompanying substances such as proteins or secondary plant substances are removed, which burn easily and thus lower the smoke point of an oil. As a result of hot pressing and refining, conventionally produced oils are nutritionally less favorable, but they are more heat-stable than native, cold-pressed vegetable oils. Many of the conventional oils are suitable for stewing or cooking. Refined peanut and soybean oil in particular have good frying and frying resistance.

The natural food trade offers oils mainly in native form. These are gently pressed or centrifuged. Even with cold pressing, temperatures of up to 65 ° C are reached due to the friction during the pressing process. However, this has no effect on the natural fat components. In order not to destroy the valuable ingredients and to prevent harmful decomposition products from developing, native oils have no place in the pan, wok or deep fryer.

Olive oil and rapeseed oil: suitable for frying?

olive oil naturally consists of around 16 percent saturated fatty acids and 76 percent of monounsaturated oleic acid. Thanks to this fatty acid pattern, olive oil can withstand temperatures of up to 180 ° C. Rapeseed oil At 60 percent, it also has a relatively high oleic acid content and is therefore more heat-stable than some other oils. This makes it suitable for stewing, cooking or baking. However, the golden yellow oil cannot withstand high temperatures such as those reached when frying or deep-frying. The same goes for roasting in a wok. Because from 140 ° C rapeseed oil begins to decompose.

In order to obtain special, very heat-stable frying and deep-frying fats, conventional manufacturers use two methods: fat hardening, also known as partial hydrogenation, and transesterification. During hardening, unsaturated fatty acids are converted into saturated fatty acids by the addition of hydrogen, which increases the melting and smoking points. In the case of transesterification, the same effect is achieved in that the fat molecule is rebuilt. However, the controversial trans fatty acids are formed during fat hardening and refining. These fatty acids, which are altered by heat, are believed to promote arteriosclerosis and may be associated with the development of diabetes mellitus and diseases of the coronary arteries.

The organic market with so-called "high oleic" frying oils offers a much healthier alternative. These are oils from specially grown sunflower and thistle varieties. Without the use of genetic engineering, breeders were able to greatly increase the oleic acid content of the plant. These special organic frying oils can withstand temperatures of up to 210 ° C. In contrast to extracted and refined oils from conventional production, they still contain natural coloring and flavoring substances.

"High oleic" frying oils

The fat of conventional sunflower seeds contains around 20 percent oleic acid; in special cultivars it can be up to 90 percent. The safflower oil from newly grown plants has more than 60 percent oleic acid - four times as much as the conventional type. The increased oleic acid content causes the smoke point of the oils to rise sharply. Additional steam treatment also paralyzes fat-splitting enzymes. Normally, these enzymes would break down the fats into free fatty acids that burn easily and thus have a negative effect on the smoke point. Serious changes in the fat constituents do not occur during treatment with steam, which can reach temperatures of up to 120 ° C. Despite the warming, "high oleic" frying oils can legally be called cold-pressed, unrefined vegetable oils. They are stable up to 210 ° C. In a frying pan or wok, where these temperatures can easily be exceeded, "high oleic" frying oils also begin to smoke.

Coconut and palm kernel fat are stable

Coconut and palm kernel fat naturally have a fatty acid pattern that can withstand temperatures of up to 210 ° C. The reason for this is the very high proportion of saturated fatty acids, which is why the fats are also solid. Poured out to form sheets or plates, they are packaged accordingly after solidification and referred to as plate fats. Clarified butter is - in contrast to butter - also suitable for the hot kitchen. It consists of 99.8 percent pure butter fat, which is melted out of butter and then centrifuged. But at around 170 ° C, the load limit is also reached here. Unhydrogenated coconut and palm kernel fats as well as clarified butter are available in organic quality in health food and health food stores. Most fats and oils quickly get too hot in the frying pan, deep fryer or wok. If you want to be on the safe side, you should keep your fingers off the sizzle, especially of unrefined oils. Fats and refined oils should also not be overused and should only be used for gentle frying.

Source: Lämmerhirt, N. UGB-Forum 4/01, pp. 193-194
Photo: AID

This article is taken from the UGB archive.

We point out that the content may have to be re-evaluated due to new scientific findings.