Ghee (clarified butter) is a cooking oil that has been around forever. Okay, not forever, but a really long time. It is mentioned in the Ayurveda text as the best oil to use because it helps us digest our food and build healthier bodies. While these texts were written thousands of years ago, our modern science acknowledges that they had it right.
From an article entitled The effect of ghee (clarified butter) on serum lipid levels and microsomal lipid peroxidation researchers found that the consumption of ghee decreases “total cholesterol, LDL, VLDL, and triglycerides; decreased liver total cholesterol, triglycerides, and cholesterol esters; and a lower level of nonenzymatic-induced lipid peroxidation in liver homogenate.” So it’s good for your liver and your heart!
Dr. Susan Blum recommends ghee to those with autoimmune problems because it “reduces inflammation and helps balance the immune cells in your gut.” To top it all off, even though it is a dairy product, people like me that have a sensitivity to dairy can use it because the dairy proteins are removed. Oh, and it tastes really magical, kind of like Christmas.
I use ghee when making eggs or cooking anything that requires fat. I put a dollop in my coffee, and I have been known to soak dates in ghee to have a nice decadent yet health-supportive treat.
You can find this miracle oil at your fancier grocery stores (like Natural Grocers and Whole Foods), online , or at your local Indian stores. However, if you want to save money like I do, you can make it.
Ingredients and tools
- Stove top
- One-half to one pound grass-fed butter
- A heavy duty sauce pan
- A fine mesh strainer or cheese cloth
- Pint- or quart-sized canning jar
- Place butter in the saucepan.
- Turn the burner on low.
- Once the butter is liquid, turn the temperature to medium.
- Once a foam appears set your timer for 5 to 7 minutes.
- A second foam will form, and you will hear a lot of crackling. (This part feels a lot like making popcorn. Listen and as the crackling starts to slow down, you know it’s ready.)
- Once ready, pour the ghee through a fine mesh strainer or cheese cloth into a pint- or quart-sized jar. Brown milk solids will be left in the strainer and at the bottom of your pan.
- Be careful, it will be hot!
You can leave ghee on the counter for up to a month, which is a great way to remind yourself to use it for cooking.