Ghee, which is also known as clarified butter is used in countless Indian dishes. It is in fact, a great alternative to cooking oil. Homemade ghee is fragrant and adds an incomparable richness to any dish. It has a nutty taste and is used in plenty of Middle Eastern recipes. Learn how to make ghee using this recipe.
Why do people use ghee? First, it doesn't burn as easily as butter. It can be purchased, but also made at home. Ghee becomes solidified at lower temperatures but can easily be melted when required. This recipe makes approximately three cups of ghee.
- 1 kilogram unsalted butter
- 2 bay leaves
- A pinch of cooking salt
- Heat a deep, heavy-bottomed pan on a medium flame and put the butter and bay leaves in it. Simmer it and allow to melt and then cook.
- When a froth appears on the surface of the butter, spoon it off and dispose of it. Keep cooking till all the froth has risen and been removed.
- Allow the mixture to cool, remove the bay leaves and strain or filter the ghee. It should be a pale golden color.
- Add a pinch of salt and mix it well. This gives the ghee a lovely grainy texture when solidified.
- Store unrefrigerated for four to six months or keep it refrigerated for even longer.
More About Ghee
Clarified butter, which is also known as drawn butter, looks more like oil than butter. It is commonly used in Holland, Australia and Scandinavia. It cooks at a higher point than other oils, so it won't break into free radicals that are known to be harmful.
Each tablespoon of ghee contains the following:
135 calories; 15 grams of total fat; 9 grams of saturated fat; 45 milligrams of cholesterol.
Health Benefits of Ghee
Ghee has numerous health benefits. It has been used not only in food but for holistic healing. It is known to do the following:
- Boost the immune system, as it contains vitamins A and E, as well as carotenoids.
- Reduce inflammation, as it lowers leukotriene secretion and prostaglandin levels -- both are things tied to inflammation.
- Reduce stomach acid and repair the stomach lining, as well as producing digestive enzymes and lowering indigestion
- Flavor a variety of foods common in Indian culture
- Be better for people who are lactose intolerant, as most of the casein and lactose is removed during ghee preparation
- Decrease cholesterol in the intestine and blood
- Transport herbs throughout the body
- Aid in weight loss when it comes from grass-fed cows, as the butter contains cancer-fighting fatty acid conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which is known to help people shed pounds
- Cure blisters and burns, healing irritated skin