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Here’s Why You Need To Add Hemp Oil To Your Meals

by Aishwarya Acharya | June 15, 2020, 17:16 IST

While cooking with olive oil, coconut oil and sunflower oil are standard practices in almost every other kitchen, hemp seed oil is fast gaining popularity.

Hemp oil is derived from cold-pressing hemp seeds. It has multifaceted benefits for skin and hair upon topical application. Most importantly, hemp oil is sustainable when it comes to encouraging eco-friendly cooking practices as it takes less water, space and is also biodegradable and not to forget, almost every part of the plant can be used bringing down a massive margin of agricultural wastes.

Megha Kohli, head chef at Lavaash by Saby and winner of Chef of the Year 2020 by Times Food Awards lists down why hemp oil is fast gaining popularity around the world for its various health benefits.

• Hemp is fast-growing, thrives in a variety of soils and doesn’t require fertilisers or pesticides. While not currently one of the most commonly consumed seeds, they have been a part of the diets of people in China and India, for many centuries. They are the same species as cannabis (marijuana), but hemp seeds don’t contain Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound that causes the drug-like effects of marijuana.

• The small, crunchy seeds have a soft, buttery texture and are rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which are also the good fats. They also contain protein, fibre and various vitamins and minerals, which justifies the recent re-discovery of these nutty flavoured seeds. A small serving of only 30 grams provides one gram of fibre, nine grams of protein, and a good source of iron.

• Advocates of cooking with hemp seed oil point to the seed’s abundant omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids content, which contribute to the health of cell membranes and skin, hair, and nails; help reduce inflammation; and improve heart health, among other benefits.

• Hemp oil is known to be cholesterol-free, unrefined or unprocessed, does not contain harmful solvent residues and contains natural antioxidants that are beneficial for the body.

How To Use Hemp Oil

You can use this oil to sprinkle on your salads. It can be used in various rice dishes and can be utilised in preparing sauces, marination, and hummus along with many other dishes.

However, ensure you do not use hemp oil to fry food either deep or shallow, as it has a low smoke point and can lead to smoke formation in your kitchen.

Move aside coconut oil and olive oil, there’s a new entrant in the sustainable division which is gaining popularity – hemp oil.

What to Know Before Cooking with Hemp Seed Oil

Hemp Oil is known as the lesser-known cousin of the CBD oil. It has its unique types of health benefits and special manufacturing methods.

Since it is lesser talked about in general we decided to share some information about it.

It is extracted specially from the hemp plant seeds, this hemp seed oil is very commonly confused with its popular counterpart, CBD oil. While CBD oil has many health benefits in its own ways, hemp oil also has plenty and various health benefits like lots of good fats and fatty acids along with a wide range of nutrients.

Hemp seed cooking oil has an interesting flavor & taste.

It’s nutty and warm and a little bit rich. If you’re a lover of various vegetable oils, I’d suggest hemp’s flavor is most analogous to walnut oil. As such, it can’t be just subbed in for any other vegetable/cooking oil.

Here are a couple important pieces of info you need to know before you get started.

  1. Hemp seed oil has a really low smoke point, 325 degrees F. That means you’ll want to use it carefully in cooking because if you try to sear some steaks in it, you’re gonna have a hemp-stinking house & funky-flavored steaks!
  2. Hemp oil’s unique flavor makes it a perfect finishing ingredient–use it in marinades, salads, with bread, drizzled on roasted veg or popcorn before serving.

There are a couple of misconceptions about hemp seed oil that we should probably clear up.

First – There is difference between hemp seed oil & CBD oil. H emp seed cooking oil does not contain CBD or THC in significant quantities.

Second – As the hemp plants mature in the field, the CBD & THC presence spikes, but then once the plants seed, CBD and THC presence all but disappears. This is one of the reasons that industrial hemp activists have been so aggressive on ending prohibition of industrial hemp.

For industrial applications, mature plants are no longer controlled substances or anywhere near them.

Third – Hemp seeds do contain protein, but the oil does not – the protein is all in the shells and the meats–vegetable oils are all fats extracted from plants.

And now that’s all out of the way, let’s talk about some ways to incorporate hemp seed oil into your holiday cooking!

You’ll want to add some hemp oil anywhere you’d like a rich, nutty flavor infusion.

Serve it with the rolls instead of or in addition to butter.

Drizzle it on top of the green bean casserole to elevate a Turkey-day favorite.

Make salad dressing using 2 parts of your favorite vinegar (strongly recommend red wine or apple cider), one part of hemp oil, some dehydrated garlic, dried or fresh sage, a splash of soy sauce or worchestershire, salt, pepper, and just a dash of sugar. If you’ve never served a brussels sprouts slaw, I’d recommend trying this tossed with raw, shredded brussels sprouts and napa cabbage. Give it a sweet/tart bite and festive coloring with some pomegranate seeds and fresh basil.

If your family is fond of steamed cauliflower, toss it in a little hemp seed cooking oil, salt, pepper, garlic, and vietnamese chili-garlic paste before serving.

If your people like homemade condiments, try subbing some or all of the oil in your favorite mayo recipe with hemp oil. It’ll have a gorgeous green hue, and you can put this on your leftover turkey sandwiches or serve it as a dipping sauce with roasted brussels sprouts & toasted pecans. Add a little garlic and call it an aioli! Impressive and adventurous!

We hope you’ll enjoy bringing the hemp seed oil to the table this Thanksgiving, and that you and yours have an excellent celebration followed by a prosperous year.

We hope you’ll enjoy bringing the hemp seed oil to the table this Thanksgiving & that you have an excellent celebration followed by a prosperous year.