What is sesame oil?
Originating in India and domesticated over 5,000 years ago, sesame seed is considered to be the oldest oilseed crop known to humanity. The sesame plant is just over a metre tall and thrives in hot, dry environments, able to grow where other crops fail.
It has one of the highest oil contents of any seed, with a rich, nutty flavour, and is a common ingredient in cuisines around the world with Sudan, Myanmar, and India as the largest producers.
Sesame oil is one of the more stable natural oils, with Tanzania the largest producer and dominating global consumption.
Falling under two main types, sesame oil is usually used as a frying oil (untoasted) or as a flavouring agent in the final stages of cooking (toasted). The non-toasted version has a light colour similar to vegetable or peanut oil, while the toasted variety is much richer and darker in colour.
Sesame oil in cooking
Sesame cooking oil is incredibly popular in Asia, particularly Korea, China, and South India, where its widespread use is comparable to Olive Oil in the Mediterranean.
As cooks and chefs value it for its flavour and fragrance, toasted sesame oil is used in Asian cooking as a seasoning rather than a cooking oil.
With a higher smoking point, untoasted sesame oil is great for deep-frying, as well as BBQ’s and regular shallow frying and stir-fry dishes.
Other benefits of sesame oil
Confirming the Old Wives’ Tales, sesame seeds come with an impressive list of health benefits.
First of all, sesame oil is well known for being a great source of both mono and polyunsaturated fats (around 40% each), which reduce your risk of heart disease and lower your blood pressure.
A study for the American Heart Association reported that over 300 men and women with high blood pressure were switched to sesame oil as their exclusive cooking oil, resulting in their average blood pressure dropping into normal range within two months!
Sesame oil also is full of antioxidants. Along with vitamin E and phytosterols, it contains lignans, sesamol, and sesaminol. These compounds help fight free radicals in your body, which may reduce your risk of developing chronic diseases.
Many cultures also use sesame oil as an anti-inflammatory, with traditional Taiwanese medicine using it to treat joint pain, toothaches, premenstrual cramps and more.
There is also empirical evidence that sesame oil can help with weight loss. A 2006 study from the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine found that participants who consumed about two and a half tablespoons of the oil daily lost an average of 1.2 Kilos in just over a month, and when subjects stopped consuming the oil, they started to put the weight that they had lost back on.
Olivado’s sesame oil
Our sesame cooking oil is untoasted, making it great for cooking rather than simply a flavouring condiment.
On top of that, thanks to our cold-pressed extraction method, we are able to retain all the natural goodness from the seed, keeping them in our final bottled oil.
No chemicals or other ingredients are used in the production of our sesame oil, and it contains no trans fats, additives, preservatives, or artificial ingredients, resulting in the purest oil possible, just as nature intended.
For dishes using sesame oil, please check out our recipes page, and if you do make something delicious, why not share it with us on our socials? Head on over to the Olivado Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram pages and let us see what you’ve come up with!
As always, if you have any questions about Olivado or our delicious oils, then please don’t hesitate to contact us today.