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Cooking with rapeseed oil

©iStockphoto.com/ChrisHepburn Author: Credits: ©iStockphoto.com/ChrisHepburn

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Cooking with rapeseed oil

Vast fields of vibrant yellow flowers stretch out for miles in the Canadian Prairies. These beautiful blooms are rapeseed flowers, more commonly known as canola flowers.

Rapeseed oil was originally used as a lubricant for steam engines. In the 1970s it was refined by Canadian plant breeders to eliminate toxins and its bitter taste, turning it into a cooking oil. Cooking with rapeseed oil is a healthy option, as it only contains six per cent saturated fat, which is the lowest among cooking oils. 

Rapeseed oil also has a relatively high smoke point, so when you're cooking with rapeseed oil, it has to be at a high temperature before it breaks down and starts to smoke. This makes it a great all-purpose oil. 

Because this oil has a mild flavour, cooking with rapeseed oil won't alter the taste of food. As such, rapeseed oil is best used for sauteing, grilling and baking. 

Check out the following recipes to find inspiration for using rapeseed oil in your everyday cooking.

3 recipes using rapeseed oil
1. Carrot Lentil Soup
Lentils are very high in folate and fibre and are a good source of vegetable protein. Serve with a whole grain baguette and a salad of half spinach and half romaine tossed with dressing.

2. Dairy-Free Cinnamon Walnut Mandelbrot
Canola oil gives these biscotti-like cookies a crispness, which makes them perfect for dipping in coffee or hot chocolate. Vegans can make a slightly crunchier version with egg replacer, a nonanimal product available at health food stores; use according to directions on the box for one large egg.

3. Couscous Bean Patties with Salad in Pita Pockets
Black beans and whole wheat couscous contribute soluble and insoluble fibres to these vegetarian burgers, which are tasty tucked into whole wheat pitas along with chopped salad.

Page 1 of 2 -- For seven more recipes you can make with rapeseed oil, see page 2
7 more rapeseed oil recipes
4. Salmon, Zucchini and Potato Frittata
Easy enough for a weeknight supper,a frittata also makes a satisfying weekend brunch.

5. Soy-Glazed Chicken Hot Pot
Keeping the bone in the chicken makes it moist and flavourful and takes advantage of lower-priced bone-in thighs. Using sodium-reduced chicken stock and soy sauce reduces the sodium level by more than half. Serve over a bed of whole grain rice.
 
6. Skillet Chicken and Sweet Potatoes
Simmering the potatoes right along with the chicken makes for an easy one-pot supper.

7. Saucy Cajun Round Steak
Less-tender cuts of meat, such as this, are not only inexpensive but also lean and high in protein and iron. You can use a pressure cooker to speed things up, or you can simmer it on the stove top or in a slow-cooker. Serve with mashed potatoes and corn.

8. Pork Chops Niçoise

Bone-in pork chops cost less than boneless, plus the flavour and cooking time are the same. Pork is one of the best sources of thiamine, a B vitamin that helps metabolize carbohydrates, protein and fat.

9. Roasted Chicken Breasts

Because most of the fat in chicken is in the skin, removing it -- and its 16 grams of fat -- makes chicken a lean choice. The parsley, lemon and garlic topping does the job the skin usually performs, keeping the breasts moist and juicy.

10. Chili Meat Loaf with Ratatouille Sauce

Lean ground beef is economical and easy to prepare. And, turned into meat loaf, it's so satisfying with Ratatouille Sauce.

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Cooking with rapeseed oil

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