Ghee is a clarified butter that is commonly used in Asian and Middle Eastern cooking. Traditionally, ghee was made from buffalo milk, but modern ghee is typically made from cow’s milk. To make ghee, first the milk is churned into butter and then it is boiled to eliminate any remaining moisture. This process creates clarified butter or Ghee. The butterfat of ghee is solid at room temperature and does not require refrigeration. Ghee has a distinct toasted or nutty flavor and it is often used in Middle Eastern countries as a replacement for oils or butter in recipes. Here are six ways to add ghee to your diet:
Ghee is an excellent substitution for olive oil or sesame oil. Ghee has a smoke point of 485 degrees Fahrenheit, meaning that it can withstand high temperatures without smoking or breaking down quickly. This smoke point is higher than most vegetable oils. So, next time you are stir-frying, consider using ghee.
When you create a dish with garlic and spices, try ghee as your base fat. Begin by sautéing garlic, whole peppercorns and the spices of your choice together in ghee. Many other oils will breakdown and begin to burn at this temperature, but ghee is able to withstand the heat.
A quick and easy meal for many is simple pasta noodles topped with butter. To make this boring meal more decadent, try replacing the butter with ghee. After you have cooked the pasta, drizzle it with a small amount of ghee. Toss to coat evenly.
4. Rice Dishes
Ghee is an ideal additive to flavorful rice dishes. When preparing a yellow rice dish, begin by sautéing diced onions, turmeric, garlic, cardamom and gloves together with some ghee. Then, add this ghee and vegetable mixture to the rice to craft a savory dish. This combination also works well with curries or spicy lentil dishes.
5. Topping for Bread
Unleavened flatbreads, such as chapatis, are popular in India, South Asia and East Africa. This chewy, flat bread has flaky golden layers and is perfect for sopping up extra sauce or meat. Another way to add ghee to your diet is by topping chapatis with a small dollop of ghee. Be careful though, a little ghee goes a long way.
If you are interested in using ghee on traditional western breads, then simply mix together some course sea salt with a small amount of ghee. Spread this on top of warm sourdough or sprouted grain bread.
6. Meats and Seafood
There are various ways you can use ghee with proteins. Consider mixing together ghee with herbs and spices of your choice and use this mixture as a rub for roasted chicken. Another option is to drizzle ghee over cooked fish, lobster or scallops.
Ghee is a versatile fat that is full of flavor. Ghee can be easily found at a natural foods store or in the ethnic aisle of most grocery stores.