Rapeseed oil has surged in popularity over the past few years. This natural wonder is low in saturated fats and high in cholesterol-lowering omega fatty acids. This is also one of the only non-blended oils that can be heated to relatively high temperatures and used for deep frying without spoiling its healthy antioxidants.
Without going overboard on health claims, rapeseed oil is easily one of the healthiest cooking oils you’ll find in the cupboard. While oils of this nature are also best used in moderation, you can certainly get away with using a bit more rapeseed oil than you could with other varieties. For this reason – and given the fact that it is cultivated in the UK – some people have even taken to calling rapeseed oil the ‘British olive oil’.
To drive this point home, we’ll consider a few advantages that rapeseed has over olive oil. To begin with, the aforementioned omega fatty acids found in rapeseed are higher than those of any other cooking oil – including olive oil. However, that is only the beginning. Here are a few other in-depth stats:
- Rapeseed oil has a saturated fat level of 6 per cent (compare to olive oil’s standard 14 per cent rating).
- Rapeseed’s omega 3 content (an important ingredient for young, developing brains) is more than ten times higher than that of olive oil.
- Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver came out near the end of 2013 with suggestion that he was switching teams from olive oil to rapeseed oil.
- For those living in the UK, a bottle of rapeseed oil is, on average, 25 per cent cheaper than an equally sized bottle of olive oil.
For Britons, switching over to rapeseed oil makes a lot of sense. Not only is it healthier for you than virtually any other oil on the market, it is also locally grown and produced. Buying locally grown cooking oil available at Fussels Fine Foods is good for the economy, and doing so also reduces the carbon footprint of the item on the shelf, as it doesn’t have to travel nearly as far to make it from the farm to your table.
Try rapeseed oil in the following popular recipes:
Fish and Chips
Fish and chips is an oily classic, and thanks to the virtues of rapeseed oil, most people can still afford to indulge in it from time to time. Start with the following ingredients:
- Two 500-gram fillets of your favourite fish (such as haddock, monkfish or lemon sole)
- 50 grams of plain flour seasoned with a dash of salt and pepper
- 100 grams of breadcrumbs
- Two eggs – beaten
- 30 mL of rapeseed oil
Dip the fish fillets into the flour mixture first, then proceed to dip them in the egg and finally the breadcrumbs. Place these on a baking sheet lined with stick-proof paper and drizzle a bit of rapeseed oil over the top. Bake this in the oven at 200°C for 9-10 minutes. The fish should come out a golden brown colour.
Rapeseed oil makes for a healthier grilled steak, and you can enjoy your favourite cut with the satisfaction of knowing that you’re also cutting back on saturated fats and (potentially) lowering your cholesterol – though the last bit certainly depends on how lean your cut of beef is.
This is a fairly straightforward process. All you really need to do is make sure that your steaks are room temperature before you place them on the grill. When they are ready to go on the grill, brush them with plenty of rapeseed oil, season them to your liking and cook them to your ideal temperature.
Tuna is championed as a healthier meat to begin with, and preparing it with rapeseed oil only enhances this quality. Seared tuna is easy to make. All you need to do is heat a griddle pan, take a 500-gram piece of tuna (cut into four pieces), brush it with about 30 mL of rapeseed oil and cook these cuts for about a minute on each side.
French-Style Salad Dressing
Start with the following ingredients to boost the omega fatty acids for your next salad:
- 60 mL of rapeseed oil
- 1 clove of garlic
- 5 mL of sugar
- 5 mL of salt
- Several turns (20 or more) of the pepper mill
- 5 mL of white wine vinegar
- 5 mL of French-style mustard
Crush the garlic clove into the salt in the bottom of a bowl. Mix in the pepper, mustard, sugar and vinegar. Whip in the rapeseed oil over this mixture and drizzle over your favourite bowl of greens.