I’m not sure how you all choose the various oils you use in the kitchen, but I have a few that I like. I remember a time when my family used a lot of just general vegetable oil and Crisco (crystallized cottonseed oil). For me, cottonseed oil I use in the kitchen is different. (This post includes affiliate links to Amazon where you can purchase the products I use.)
To be clear, I have a combination of a few oils I use — olive oil is pretty common and you may remember my seeing some olive oil be pressed a few years ago. But I also have used a variety of cottonseed oils that many would find unusual.
Last year, I shared a recipe for a tortilla soup I make in my Instant Pot and casually mentioned that I used a cilantro cottonseed oil. However, I have to confess, I more commonly use the shallot version but also really like several other flavors.
Why cottonseed oil?
There are lots of choices in terms of cooking oils and they all have reasons to use them.
- Flavor — I love the flavor of really good olive oil and use it with a range of the things I make — especially things like hummus, salads, etc. One of the things I love about cottonseed oil is it doesn’t really have a flavor. It seems to take on flavors of the things it is cooking or mixed with.
- Flexibility — Cottonseed oil makes a great oil for frying since it cholesterol free, has a high flashpoint so sauteeing goes well without the oil changing its profile and it is great on salads too — especially some of the flavored oils! Love that Acala Farms, the company that makes the oils I use, has a variety of suggested recipes using cottonseed oil.
- Long history of safe use — I appreciate that cottonseed oil has a long tradition of use, especially in areas of the world where cotton is grown. After all, it is one of the primary uses of cottonseed. The oil doesn’t contain the gossypol I mentioned in a recent post on the effort to create edible cottonseed.
If none of those reasons are enough, then let me add lots of prominent chefs and restaurants use it — my beloved Cafe du Monde beignets are fried up in it!
Cottonseed Oil on the Menu!
I had a chance to taste several of these cottonseed oils thanks to Tom Wedegaertner (@CottonTom) and some of the team at Cotton Incorporated. I’ve been there with my day job to speak to farmers and found the dinner included a range of flavors! Appreciate the Cotton Inc team for working with catering staff to get me thinking about the many ways I can use the oils at home! I have made that happen.
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