Glorious Ghee

Grass-fed ghee is my favourite fat. It provides a multitude of health benefits and its slightly caramelised flavour complements recipes very well.

What?

Until about a year ago, I had only heard of using ghee in indian dishes; I had no idea about its health benefits and versatility. Ghee is clarified butter, meaning that it has been very gently simmered over a low heat until the milk proteins, water and lactose separate from the fat and are strained away. A lot of people who cannot tolerate dairy are able to eat ghee without any gastrointestinal complaints; ghee can actually help to heal the gut1. Ghee also has a high-smoke point so can be used when cooking at higher temperatures without the fat becoming damaged.albumtemp

Why?

  • Micronutrients and antioxidants

Ghee provides the all the nutrients found in butter but is better tolerated as the water, casein, and the vast majority of lactose have been removed2.

  • Aids digestion

Butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid found in ghee, helps to support the digestive system by aiding the conversion of fibre into butyric acid, vital for detoxification3.

  • Anti-inflammatory

Also due to the butyrate, ghee helps to reduce inflammation in the digestive tract and overall inflammation in the body4.

  • CLA

Meat and products from grass-fed cows are higher in CLA than grain-fed cows5. CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid, reduces the risk of cancer and body fat, as well as improving brain function6.

  • Anti-microbial and anti-fungal

Ghee contains medium-chain fatty acids, including lauric acid, which provides potent anti-microbial and anti-fungal effects7.

  • Direct energy

Medium-chain fatty acids present in ghee are instantly used by the body as energy, rather than being stored as fat8.

  • Vitamins A, D and E

These fat-soluble vitamins are found in ghee and as ghee is mostly saturated fat, you can be sure that you will be absorbing them when eating it! I noticed a difference in my skin when I started including ghee in my diet, likely due to the vitamin E which helps to heal damaged skin as well as balance hormones and cholesterol9.

  • Tastes incredible!

If all these health benefits haven’t convinced you that you need ghee in your life, then the taste alone should. It’s slightly sweet, nutty flavour is so delicious I can quite easily eat it by the spoonful; I will choose ghee over a particular chocolate hazelnut spread any day!

How?

  • Bulletproof Coffee

I much prefer using ghee in my Bulletproof Coffee simply because I prefer the flavour; vanilla ghee (find the recipe on the blog on Saturday) tastes incredible in coffee. The additional benefit of using ghee in Bulletproof Coffee is that the fat doesn’t separate, leaving a smooth, creamy consistency.

  • When cooking

The high smoke point means ghee is great for cooking at higher temperatures.

  • As a condiment

I always add ghee on top of steamed vegetables, for flavour and optimal absorption of nutrients. I will be posting the recipes for flavoured ghees on Saturday – these work well with meat, fish and vegetables.

 

Top tip: Always choose unsalted grass-fed butter when making ghee for a more nutrient-dense fat. Kerrygold is the most readily available in the UK.

 

G.

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