Unraveling margarine: do you know what it is made of?

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Have you ever stopped to think about the ingredients of margarine? Find out here

Present in the daily lives of most Brazilians, many people enjoy the flavor and indisputable creaminess of margarines. And do you know what are the ingredients used to produce this food with such a creamy texture and taste of breakfast?

It has no great secret in its composition: it is a food of vegetable origin, made from a combination of vegetable oils, the same ones used for cooking at home such as soybean, sunflower oils, in addition to palm and palm kernel oils ( extracted from a type of Palm), combined with salt, water and, in some cases, a little milk. That is, old ingredients known and present on the table of most Brazilians.

In addition to the above ingredients, other components can be added in small amounts to ensure conservation, color or taste. As an example are the beta-carotene dye (found in foods like carrots), citric acid (found in citrus fruits) and lecithin (found in vegetable oils).

The mixture of these ingredients is beaten to gain texture (a technique known as emulsification) and then cooled for a while to become more solid (a process called crystallization), thus promoting one of the greatest qualities of margarine: the creamy consistency inside and outside the refrigerator , making it much easier to spread. Because of vegetable oils, margarines naturally contain omega-3 and omega-6, fats that are essential in the diet.

It is important to clarify that the majority of margarines on the market have not been containing trans fat for many years, which has proven to be harmful to health. And that happened thanks to new technologies, which allowed the removal of the partial hydrogenation process that causes trans fat. Therefore, it is important to always seek a quality brand and reference in the market, in order to ensure that it is of high quality and does not contain trans fat.

Therefore, as a source of fats from vegetable oils, margarine can be part of the diet, as long as it is consumed in moderation and within a balanced diet.

How to use?

So versatile, margarine is traditionally used to give that special taste in green corn, cakes, popcorn and of course, in the daily bread. But it is also an old acquaintance of cakes and confectioners for the preparation of cakes, breads, creams, among others, because in addition to making the dough soft, it is also useful when anointing the shape so that the cake does not stick.

In the case of savory recipes, margarine can be used in white sauces, purees, salty and to give creaminess in preparations, such as a scrambled egg, for example. In addition, it goes very well in sautéing to add flavor when cooking vegetables.

For all tastes, just let your creativity flow.

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