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Archive for September 22, 2010

TIP OF THE DAY: The Right Cooking Oil

When you’re making a choice of cooking oil at the supermarket, do you know why you choose that particular type? Is it habit, what your mother used, whatever is on sale?

There are three reasons to pick a cooking oil:

1. The first is for your health: Unsaturated fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, are heart healthy.

These include avocado oil, canola oil, olive oil, peanut oil and nut- and seed oils.

Saturated fats and trans fats are unhealthy oils. It’s best to avoid tropical oils: coconut oil, palm oil and others.

Trans fats, saturated fats that occur in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, have gotten so much press over the last couple of years that most of us know to avoid them. While many products have been reformulated, look closely at the labels of margarine and shortening.


Avocado oil is heart-healthy and has a very
high smoke point. Check out Olivado avocado
, a NIBBLE Top Pick Of The Week. Photo
by Melody Lan | THE NIBBLE.

While they’re delicious, limit your intake of animal fats (butter, bacon grease, chicken fat, lard, etc.).

2. The second reason to choose an oil is the smoke point. Sautéing occurs at a much lower heat than deep fat frying, for example.

Take a look at our smoke point chart to see the different temperature tolerances of the major oils and fats.

3. The flavor you prefer (or lack thereof) is another reason to choose an oil. But first, be sure it’s healthy and the right smoke point.

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TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Chocomize Custom Chocolate

We custom-designed these chocolate
bars to combine our favorite flavors.
Photo by Katharine Pollak | THE NIBBLE.

Chocolate lovers, your dream has come true.

If you enjoy a fine chocolate bar—but wish you could custom-design it to add more of your favorite flavors—Chocomize is ready to serve you.

We created all of the chocolate bars in the photo. First choose your chocolate—in this case, excellent Barry Callebaut bars from Belgium in dark, milk or white chocolate.

Then top it with up to 5 selections from almost 100 choices:

  • 17 types of nuts and seeds
  • 18 types of dried fruit
  • 11 sweet and savory spices
  • 24 different types of candy
  • 12 “decorations,” including flower petals, gold flakes and birthday greetings
  • 15 “other,” a group of favorites ranging from coffee beans to cereals, potato chips and pretzels, cookies and logos
It’s fun, it’s delicious and it’s inexpensive—your fantasy chocolate bar for less than $10. An e-gift certificate lets your friends and family design their own bars.


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