Cooking with Essential Oils

by Sumedha Rewar

Nutritious food with flavored spices is a picture of the honored tradition. The flowers and herbs are a great source of providing delicious wellness resources with the extended value of cooking celebration. All the goodness of essential oils can be grabbed by including it into some of the finest cooking and delicious recipes.

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Controversies related to Ingestion of Essential Oils

The ingestion of essential oils has always been a controversial topic. You must know about them fully before including these oils into any dish. There are plenty of options available and you can select the real and synthetic essential oils, which have been used as flavoring agents for years. It is easy to add these oils or aromatic agents, but the volume and quantity have to be known. There are some essential oils adding to the food safety. Some anti-microbial oils can minimize the illness if they are added to packaging.

Cooking with essential oils is possible and it can be done safely if you are aware of the right quantity and the idea behind using the particular oil. Every essential oil is not meant to be used for cooking. You need to consider the profile, safety and precautions to make the cooking safe and useful in all the aspects.

Basics of Cooking

Essential oils can make your food flavorful and delicious. There is a huge variety of nutrients offered by some of the finest oils. It is easy to add a drop and make your food unique in every aspect. The essential oil can take the place of an artificial flavoring ingredient and gives a different flavor to the food.

The essential oil is concentrated and should be used in very small quantity. You can spoil your whole dish if there is even a little more essential oil added to the dish. So, you need to be extremely careful about the same.

Taking a small example, the cinnamon sticks or powder requires being put in more quantity than one or two drops to be added for a full recipe. You need to ensure that the flavors get evenly dispersed in the whole dish. It can be diluted in some olive oil and added to the recipe. Honey or syrup runs well for the sweet dishes. In the case of hot recipes, it is important to wait till the whole process ends before adding the oil. Most of the oils are volatile in nature and dissipate with high heat. You can dilute the essential oil and add it in the final phase to enjoy the flavors in the best way.

Effect on Cooking on the properties of the Essential Oils

This is the most common thing coming into the mind of people. It is clear that we’re adding the essential oils for getting the health or flavor benefits. The major concerns of essential oils for cooking are: Change in the chemical structure and Evaporation of oil.

These are valid concerns and should be thought of while making use of the essential oils in food. The reason for adding the essential oils in the last phase of cooking is quite clear. The evaporation can be minimized by best dilution and dispersion throughout the whole cooking procedure. In some essential oils, the boiling process actually gives better results than baking or microwaving it. The quality of the essential oil has to be very superior because these oils will be ingested and the properties are retained for the ultimate benefits.

Remember the fact that cooking with essential oils is meant for attaining fragrance and flavors into the dish with the potential health benefits.

Major Essential Oils for Cooking

You can use these oils (one or two drops) in the raw or cooked form in the food. Fewer drops in a recipe will give different flavor and safety for a wide number of dishes. Some of the best essential oils for cooking are:

1) Lavender

Lavender is gentle oil and you can easily cook with its essence. It has floral and delicate flavor and is mainly used for dessert recipes. The recipe will be taken towards gourmet tone and give a calming effect to the body. It also has anti-anxiety effects, which are actually good for everyone to relieve from daily burdens.

2) Citrus

Citrus oils are always great for cooking. These are unique and generated directly from the fruits rich in Vitamin C. There is no steam distillation followed for generating them and hence, there is no application of heat on them in any way. Citrus oils in smoothies, mocktails and another form of treats can be actually a great choice. There are endless recipes having the scope to add citrus effect on them. These fruity oils can be wonderful in every aspect. It can energize the body and even contains antimicrobial properties.

3) Bergamot

Bergamot is citrus in nature, but it requires an exclusive mentioning. It is not a common fruit, which is eaten directly. Instead, it can act as an anxiety reliever. The mild citrus effect is great for a blend with green tea. It is cold-pressed oil having anti-anxiety and stress relieving properties.

4) Peppermint

Peppermint has a cool and refreshing effect on the body. Just a single drop of peppermint essential oil added to honey can give an energizing effect to the body in the beginning of the day. It can also go well with other essential oils (lemon, peppermint, lavender and others) for getting the best blends. The three essential oils and flavors work together in a great way with peppermint effect. Peppermint oil is generally included in mint treats, chocolates and candies to get a sudden refreshing flavor in the mouth. It can energize you and gets you relieved from aches and pains.

5) Ginger

Ginger essential oil can be used for cooking. It is a digestive substance used for relieving stomach and stress. Adding ginger to food elements like bread, spicy drinks or snaps will give a great effect. It can be used in savory dishes also. It is relatively an easy addition than the fresh ginger and can be utilized quickly. Ginger essential oil will keep your digestion strong, prevents nausea and has anti-inflammatory benefits for the body.

6) Thyme

Thyme essential oil can be used against the microbes, which cause illness in the body. It builds up immunity and makes the food flavorful. It has a savory flavor and used in giving flavors to the main course dishes, such as meat. The herb flavor even goes well with soups, bakes, and stews. This essential oil can give a surprising twist to the flavors of food.

7) Cinnamon

Cinnamon essential oil has the strong flavors and effects on the body. It is required for sweet dishes as a replacement to the powdered cinnamon bark. Cinnamon essential oil is used for boosting the flavors of French toast and other bakery items. It has anti-microbial properties and antioxidant effects. You’ll feel energized to get the effect of energizing oil.

8) Coriander/Cilantro

Coriander is the plant seed and cilantro is the leaf. The essential oils of coriander and cilantro work in a similar way. The benefits are similar but the flavors are different for both options. Coriander oils work well in preparation of pickles, sauces, vegetable dishes and other recipes. Cilantro essential oil is used in salsas, savory cuisine, and various dips. Coriander and cilantro essential oils give antioxidant and digestive health benefits.

9) Cardamom

Cardamom is a very strong antioxidant having the potential to improve your digestion. It is used in tea or main course dishes to get digestive benefits to the recipe with different flavors. Cardamom essential oil can relieve nausea and antioxidant composition.

10) Anise

The licorice flavored Anise essential oil can get the delicious tone to any kind of recipe. It is majorly used in ethnic recipes, cookies, marinades, sausages, soups and many other treats.

The flavor of Anise is similar to fennel and you can enjoy the benefits of digestive wellness along with the good flavor. It can be dangerous if used in excess.

Safety and Precautions to follow

There are many studies revealing the drug indications and precautions to follow for essential oil safety. The trained researchers will give you the most appropriate blends for essential oils in cooking. It is important to see that essential oils are safe in the right quantity and in an appropriate usage. Your common sense can be the best way to make the cooking marvelous. Make sure that you discontinue the use of the oil if any odd reaction occurs.

Sumedha Rewar
Sumedha Rewar
Sumedha Rewar is an expert in aroma-therapy and has experience in sharing valuable information for Reiki and Yoga articles as well. She is eager to know about the newest trends in the market and researching about them in the best way. Her experiments in essential oils with the scientific study have motivated her towards sharing the valuable information for the same.