Many people ave discovered the value of coconut oil in baking — the flavor and texture compliments many baked goods well and coconut oil allows you to replace shortening or vegetable oils high in detrimental Omega 6 oils. You may get a slight coconut flavor in your finished baked good, but even the most coconut-tasting of oils (such as that in our coconut oil review) will be a slight undertone — nothing aggressive. As far as texture is concerned, you will probably see no difference at all in replacing oil or even butter in your recipes. From a health point of view, this oil does aid digestion, helps build immunity, has anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial properties.
Outdated information on coconut oil being unhealthy was based on studies of hydrogenated and refined coconut oil, not virgin coconut oil. Coconut oil scares also come from the school of thought that any amount of saturated fat is bad, overlooking the point that healthy, traditional coconut oil that kept islanders slim and healthy for centuries before they were invaded with Western hydrogenated substitutes.
Coconut oil can easily replace other fats in your baking on a one-to-one basis. Coconut oil is solid in cold temperatures and liquid in warm temperatures, allowing you to replace shortening in a recipe with a cooled, solid coconut oil and liquid vegetable oils with a warmer coconut oil.
Replacing Shortening With Coconut Oil in Baking
Where a solid coconut oil is needed such as in replacing shortening (or even butter), have the oil at a cool room temperature. This can be tricky in the summer months if you have no air conditioning. If your oil has gone to liquid, try measuring out the needed amount, pour it into your mixing bowl and refrigerate. Every five to ten minutes stir up the oil for the solidification process to be even. The coconut oil should be solid enough that you can beat it to a fluffiness as you would with butter or shortening. It will look a bit different than the butter or shortening, but the coconut oil will whip up with sugar and eggs in much the same fashion you are used to.
Other than this temperature consideration, proceed with your recipes as you always have.
Consider keeping a two-cup measure in the refrigerator in the peak of the summer so that you always have some solid coconut oil ready for baking.
Replacing Liquid Oils With Coconut Oil in Baking
Where a liquid coconut oil is needed, you must still be aware of temperatures. If your oil is not already liquid, it is a simple thing to melt the measured amount over a heat source and then cool the coconut oil down. The real trick is to make certain that the rest of your ingredients are about the same temperature. If they are quite cold, as in “out of the refrigerator” cold, then your liquid coconut oil will solidify as soon as it hits the cold ingredients. This situation is not the end of the world. You can stir like crazy to break the coconut oil up into small flakes. But, you will easily get better results if the oil and the batter are almost the same temperature. If they are, then the coconut oil will beautifully blend into your batter.
Consider melting your coconut oil at the beginning of your baking project, taking care not to let it over-heat. Set it aside to cool off as you prepare the rest of your baking project.
Switching to coconut oil in your baking is a fairly simple process. You will soon pick up the habit of watching the temperature of your oil to perform the duties you require of it. Good flavor and healthy baked goods will be your reward.
This post was shared at Baking With Bizzy
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