Did you know you can cook with shea butter? Shea butter is a multipurpose, healthy cooking oil. Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the African shea tree.
Shea butter is rich in vitamin A, D, E and K and is high in essential fatty oleic, stearic, linoleic and palmitic acids. Shea butter, also known as Women’s Gold in Africa plays a key role in the kitchen.
It takes about 20 years for a tree to bear fruit and produce nuts, maturing on average at the age 45. Most trees will continue to produce fruit for up to 200 years after reaching maturity.
Shea butter which is locally grown here in Uganda has long been recognized for its emollient and healing properties ideal for soothing skin in the dry climate. Reports of its use go back to the 14th century.
Raw shea butter is shea butter that has not been filtered and moulded into shapes. Food grade raw shea butter is edible and is used in many food recipes. Shea butter oil has a very strong nutty taste and scent.
Grade A unrefined shea butter is safe to eat and is used by many people as a type of cooking oil because it is very heat tolerant. Many people use a bit of it in their cooking because it adds vitamins and nutrients to your meals. Besides its nutritional value shea butter also adds an aromatic nutty flavour without adding whole nuts.
Fun fact: 80% of all shea butter produced is used in the chocolate industry as a substitute for cocoa butter.
2 tablespoons food grade raw shea butter
2 cups raw walnuts halves
1 cup raw whole almonds
1/2 cup sweet flaked coconut (optional)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon dried curry powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Preheat the oven to 300°.
Add shea butter to a 13- x 9- x 2-inch baking pan; set the pan in the oven to melt the shea butter.
Remove the pan from the oven; add nuts and Worcestershire sauce to the melted shea oil. Gently stir until well mixed.
Bake the nut mixture until it is toasted, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Mix all spices and coconut in a small bowl.
Remove the nuts from the oven and sprinkle the mixture evenly with spices. Toss until well mixed.
Transfer the warm nuts to a bowl and serve immediately, or let cool and store them at room temperature in an airtight container until ready to serve.
Have fun in the kitchen with shea butter!!!
Remember you are a GEM.