Specialty Natural Oils
Cottonseed Oil is characterized by a bland, slightly nutty flavor. It
is often blended with other fats and oils to lower cost and to improve
the quality and functionality of the substance it is added to. It has
a minimal flavor transfer that makes it ideal for frying seafood, convenience
foods and oriental dishes, especially tempura, since it will not mask
the flavor of the food. Primarily used in the U.S. as a salad or cooking
oil it is commonly used in mayonnaise, sauces and marinades. It is also
a popular ingredient in baked goods in the form of margarine, shortening
and cake icings.
Cottonseed Oil is extracted from cottonseed (the seed of the cotton
plant) in large mills that process millions of tons of seed each year.
The meal and hulls that are left after the oil is removed are used for
high protein animal feed and roughage. The Peoples Republic of
China is the largest producer of cottonseed oil; the United States is
the major world exporter.
On a historic note: Cottonseed oil pioneered the American vegetable
oil industry and maintained a pre-eminent position as the top commercial
oil in the U.S. from the mid-1800's to the 1950's.
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