This week in my kitchen…Store Cupboard Basics…Part 6…Cooking Oils…

Essential for both cooking and adding flavour to dishes, there many different types of oil. When it comes to cooking oils some are more controversial than others for both health reasons and environmental concerns…

I tend to use a variety of oils depending on what I am cooking or flavouring…I  also believe that oil is an essential cooking basic but as with everything moderation should be applied…

If all you eat are deep fried foods then of course it will affect your health…

Corn Oil… Corn oil is oil extracted from the germ of corn. Its main use is in cooking, where its high smoke point makes refined corn oil a valuable frying oil. It is also a key ingredient in some margarines. Corn oil is generally less expensive than most other types of vegetable oils

Palm Oil… One of the most controversial of the options…for both health and environmental reasons. Palm oil is an edible vegetable oil that comes from the fruit grown on the African oil palm tree.

The trees, which were previously found only in Africa, are now grown in Asia, North America and South America – coinciding with the increasing demand for the versatile oil.

Groundnut (peanut) oil…A virtually flavourless oil which is used for frying, baking and making dressing such as mayonnaise.

olive oil

Olive Oil… One of my preferred choices of oil …Olives are a fruit that I never liked as a child but acquired the taste for as I grew older…Olive oil is a beautiful thing and when I am not using coconut oil for cooking I use olive oil it is also most suited to Mediterranean type recipes as well…

But be careful when you buy it as is the case with everything now some oils are a blend of many oils or so highly processed and are not classed as proper Olive oil….There are so many different dishes which are all better for the addition of olive oil. Health wise it is classed as a super food as it is so beneficial to our health.

Two of my favourite ways of using olive oil are with balsamic vinegar and beautiful home-baked bread or cooked with chorizo…a lovely tapas…


Chorizo cooked with garlic and dried chillies in olive oil makes a lovely little snack or tapas with some lovely bread to mop up the juices. Just take some sliced chorizo and cook it in Olive oil until it is browned and the lovely orange colour from the chorizo leaks into the olive oil….Just beautiful and so easy to make at home.

Vegetable oil… a blend of oils which usually includes corn and other vegetables is cheap, flavourless and useful for most types of cooking.

Coconut oil…There are varying views and there have been some controversial headlines over the last few years…Coconut oil is “pure poison,” says Harvard professor… Good fats come mainly from vegetables, nuts, seeds, and fish. Healthy fats are liquid at room temperature, not solid…..

The plot thickens my coconut oil is liquid? I know coconuts are high in saturated fats but…MODERATION… My health has improved since I have incorporated coconut oil etc in my diet although depending on what I am making I may use olive oil or another healthy oil again it is about balance and moderation…

Some research states that the saturated fat from the coconut may react differently to other saturated fats in our bodies…..Why? Because most of the saturated fats in coconut are medium chain fatty acids whose properties and metabolism are different from those of animal origin. Medium chain fatty acids do not undergo degradation and re-esterification processes and are directly used in the body to produce energy. They are not as ‘bad for health’ as other saturated fats.

Also if you would like to make a lovely gift for that special someone then this makes a beautiful gift …How to make your own coconut oil…The traditional Thai way…

Ghee… Is also one of my kitchen staples…

Ghee is a type of clarified butter that contains fewer dairy proteins than regular butter. This ingredient can be used in place of regular butter.

Ghee can be used as a substitute for butter, and many people think that ghee might be a more healthful alternative for using in cooking.


It has been used in Indian and Pakistani cultures for thousands of years. The term comes from the Sanskrit word meaning “sprinkled.” Ghee was created to prevent butter from spoiling during warm weather.


Flavoured oils…

Herb infused oils…There are many different herb-infused oils they are also so easy to make at home. Just half fill a clean sterilised jar with washed and dried herbs such as rosemary or basil. Pour over olive oil to cover and seal the jar. Place it in a cool, dark place for 3 days. Strain the oil into a clean sterilised bottle or jar and discard the herbs.

If you like you can add a piece of freshly washed and dried herb which looks pretty and makes a lovely gift.

Chilli oil…Add several dried chillies to a bottle of olive oil and leave to infuse for about two weeks before using. If the flavour is not to your taste then leave for another week…it all depends on taste and the chillies. The chillies can also be left in the bottle and again look very nice and make a lovely gift with a handwritten label.

Garlic oil…Add several whole garlic cloves to a bottle of olive oil and leave to infuse for about two weeks if preferred you can strain into a clean bottle and store in a cool, dark place.

I have only given you a brief overview of these oils and advise that you do your own research and don’t listen to scaremongering but also remember it is moderation and any foods or drinks which are consumed excessively will have an effect on your health and well being…

I hope you are finding these posts on store cupboard basics helpful…It does take time (and) money to build up a store cupboard which is why I am breaking it down into easy stages…Just for those of you who are not sure just where to start…

Whether you call it a cupboard or a pantry a savvy cook knows it helps them create delicious, economical dishes without using expensive ingredients or having to pop out and hope no one sees us without our slap…Picture the scene… we are halfway through making a new recipe…We can taste it…Then up pops the ingredient we thought we had in the cupboard or we missed that bit of the recipe…The shop is shut…It is raining…We are in our house clothes…Don’t they always though…haha

Until next week when in-store cupboard basics will be vinegar, sauces and condiments…xxx

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a relaxing weekend xx



3 thoughts on “This week in my kitchen…Store Cupboard Basics…Part 6…Cooking Oils…

  1. Pingback: CarolCooks2…Weekly roundup…Climate Change, Health, Recipes …Week ending 19th Oct 2019… | Retired? No one told me!

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