As with most foods that you’ll find on the shelf, there are huge discrepancies in flavour, taste and texture, the majority of which come down to two things – quality of produce and production techniques.

Cultivation, ingredients, provenance, handling, packaging, storage – all of these factors play a HUGE role in how food looks, tastes and performs when we cook – not to mention the health benefits that it can bring to the table. Perfecting these processes form the foundation of everything we do here at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, but it’s in our core method: the act of cold pressing our seeds, where the real conduit to quality and value lies.

A better way of doing things

In the same way that a cold pressed juice retains more vitamins, enzymes, minerals and antioxidants than it’s processed counterparts, cold pressed rapeseed oil offers very similar benefits. We never expose the seeds to heat, and we never add anything artificial. Our method simply allows us to extract every ounce of flavour from our seeds whilst maintaining nutritionally beneficial plant sterols, vitamins and healthy fats.

At Farrington’s Mellow Yellow our process is simple: we take the best quality seeds; mechanically squeeze them to release the oil and then filter through a large tea style strainer, before putting the fresh, pure oil in a bottle ready for you to enjoy. As part of this process, we carry out around 39 quality checks on every bottle of oil or salad dressing we make, ensuring only the very best is good enough. Simple pure Mellow Yellow pleasure!

Most culinary oils consumed globally are refined as opposed to being cold pressed. For olive oil this process includes using hexane solvent, phosphoric acid, caustic soda, water and temperatures reaching 250°C. For rapeseed oil the process includes hexane solvent and temperatures around 90°C. These industrial processes lose much of the quality, flavour and colour characteristics of the original oils. Refined olive oil is also referred to as pomace oil.

As the magic ingredient behind the healthy Mediterranean diet, olive oil is often perceived as the gold standard in oils. And it’s true – olive oil is great! But so are other oils too. And when it comes to health benefits, rapeseed oil supersedes olive oil in many ways, particularly when the oils are cold pressed.

At Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, we’re proud to produce a rapeseed oil with seeds originating from LEAF Marque grower farms and our own family farm here in Hargrave. We value traceability enormously and we are proud to be at the helm of our production line – sowing, growing and pressing the rapeseed oil into high quality, delicious bottles for you to enjoy at home.

Inflation; The cost of living; Global shocks; Food shortages; Extreme weather. The last couple of years have played host to an onslaught of major events, resulting in big price increases to the things we buy – particularly food.

We know the food service industry has been hugely impacted by these events. So, in this post we’re focusing on our Mellow Yellow values: the importance of ingredients, provenance, quality and fair pricing in the face of what appears to be huge changes for the British food industry. As producers of fine quality rapeseed oil, we understand that as chefs, business owners and fellow producers, you don’t want to compromise on values – especially when it comes to ingredients: the bread and butter of your business.

And we’re singing the praises of rapeseed oil – the gold nectar of our business – that brings a wealth of creative opportunities and quality culinary moments to your kitchen, without the same price hikes we’re witnessing across the olive oil industry.

The changing landscape of culinary oils

The Ukrainian conflict combined with the extreme heat and wildfires in the Mediterranean have led to massive inflationary pressures on culinary oils over the last two years, with prices doubling in many cases. Whilst the initial shocks of the Ukrainian conflict have somewhat subsided, the continued difficulties in olive oil producing regions due to extreme weather conditions and disease killing olive trees, is leading to a longer-term shortage of olive oil globally, with big price increases as a result.

These price hikes have inevitably imposed huge pressures on business margins, which is why, here at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow we have worked hard to keep price rises to an absolute minimum. It’s fair to say it’s not always been easy! Our electricity bill tripled at one point and the jerry cans we use seemed to be creeping up in cost with every new order. As a fair wage employer – we’ve also been conscious to ensure that our loyal team have fair pay rises. Despite these challenges, we’ve managed to pick our way through the hurdles and avoid reactionary panic price increases.

Excellent value for money

We like to think that our cold pressed Farrington’s Mellow Yellow Rapeseed Oil, Chilli Oil and range of dressings continue to offer excellent value for money, helping you maintain your margins at a time when other ingredients are escalating in price, with zero compromises on the quality of your food.

Looking at the graph below, it is clear to see how Mellow Yellow rapeseed oil compares to extra virgin olive oil (EVO) and pomace oil over the last two years, showing that you can continue enjoying the wonderful taste, versatility, health and sustainable values of Mellow Yellow, without a negative impact to your bottom line.

 

 

EVO has nearly doubled in price, while the inferior refined pomace oil has increased to the same price as Mellow Yellow. With Mellow Yellow cold pressed rapeseed oil, you have the opportunity to use a premium, sustainably produced British oil with similar provenance to EVO, whilst it’s mild subtle nutty flavour and high smoke point make it truly versatile in the kitchen; it is the oil of choice for much of your culinary requirements.

There’s no need to resort to a refined commodity pomace oil when Mellow Yellow tastes better, performs better and is better for your bottom line. A premium quality ingredient that works hard for you in your kitchen. That’s the Mellow Yellow promise. That’s the Mellow Yellow value.

Food is an opportunity to nourish, refuel and energise the body. But it’s also an opportunity to experience flavour in all of its incredible shapes and forms. And for that – you need versatile products in your store cupboard!

In this post – the 4th in our Mellow Yellow Values Series – we’re focusing on the value of versatility across our full product range and the benefits that can bring to modern cooking, modern eating and modern life.

Help! Which oil?

There are multiple choices of oils and fats to use in our cooking repertoire. Some you may use occasionally for a specific recipe; others are more versatile as store cupboard essentials; then there’s that one lurking at the back of the cupboard collecting dust because you can’t remember what you bought it for! So much choice, so much confusion. So, which oils REALLY offer the best value and deserve pride of place in our kitchen?

Culinary oils are often segregated into two camps – one for cooking, one for drizzling. But what if there was an oil that was good enough to handle both? Saving you money, but also saving countertop space without any health compromises.

Farrington’s Mellow Yellow rapeseed oils and dressings offer the opportunity to become valued store cupboard essentials. Cold pressed for maintaining nutrients and known for its high smoke point, it’s the ideal meet-in-the-middle oil that’s a dream drizzled onto salads, or into a pan or roasting dish to cook a main meal.

The original Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil is a truly versatile oil. It has a delicious subtle nutty flavour, with buttery undertones; it is clean on the tongue and unlike some oils, it doesn’t have an oily, or bitter aftertaste. This clean subtle flavour allows other ingredients to shine through, and it’s the unsung hero in a salad dressing due to its excellent emulsifying properties and subtle flavour.

Mellow Yellow for cooking and baking

Mellow Yellow is ideal for baking breads and cakes due to its clean light flavour, it doesn’t overpower or taint a cake like a more robust oil. Whilst most people are familiar with butter or non-dairy spread for baking, Mellow Yellow is an excellent and healthy option in many recipes. We have plenty of delicious recipes on our website to inspire you – our Courgette Loaf Cake and Beetroot & Chocolate Cake being particular favourites. For something a little different, you could try our Chilli Oil in making a Chilli Chocolate Brownie – the perfect melody of rich and spicy! Feel free to experiment with your own ideas too – we love to see how you use Mellow Yellow in your home kitchen.

Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil has a high smoke point of around 230°C, making it ideal for roasting ovens, stir fry pans or air fryers. Impress your family and friends as you enjoy excellent crispy roast potatoes, crunchy croutons, bruschetta and crispy tender stir-fried vegetables. No soggy food dripping in oil – just brilliantly cooked food with flavour up front and centre, just how it should be.

Mellow Yellow for drizzling

Drizzled on a simple salad with a little seasoning and vinegar or worked into your own homemade dressing – our four classic Mellow Yellow Salad Dressings are packed with robust, clean and delightful flavours to elevate your plates.

Choose from Honey & Mustard; Balsamic Vinegar; Classic Vinaigrette and Chilli & Cumin, all ready-made for you, using the same quality ingredients you would use yourself at home. Our quality dressings are also a handy way to amplify the flavours in your homemade marinades and sauces. How about salmon fillet lightly cooked in Chilli & Cumin dressing for a refreshing aromatic dish? Or our classic Roasted Honey & Mustard New Potatoes ? There are plenty of ideas on our recipes page to inspire something different for dinner tonight.

A particular favourite of ours is our Seed & Nut Granola recipe, where the subtle nutty flavour of Mellow Yellow combines perfectly with chopped nuts, seeds and oats to make a delicious breakfast treat. Or, if you’re looking for something a little heartier, there’s always the full English! Whether you opt for vegetarian or meat – the sky is the limit with Mellow Yellow. Fried eggs, potatoes, mushrooms, hash browns, baked beans – we think you’ll agree, it’s a classic that never gets old.

Mellow Yellow for roasting and stir frying

It is high temperature cooking where Mellow Yellow excels compared to many other oils in the kitchen. Both the original Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil and the Chilli Oil are fantastic for roasting and stir-frying. Whether you’re cooking the traditional family Sunday roast, or challenging yourself with more international flavours, Mellow Yellow has the taste, functionality and versatility you need to make cooking a treasured, memorable and fun part of home life. We like to think of it as the valued kitchen counter essential ingredient.

Browse our exciting recipe pages for inspiration and ideas of how to dress, drizzle, marinade, bake, roast or stir fry with Farrington’s Mellow Yellow. Happy cooking!

Everyone has a favourite culinary oil in their kitchen, you may use different oils depending on the occasion. Some people worry that some oils may be ‘bad’, and others are ‘good,’ often picked up from different marketing messages, urban myths, or the occasional extreme sensationalist social media campaign.

Like most oils on the shelf, rapeseed oil has had its share of unfair criticism during it’s time. So, in this post – the second in our values campaign – we wanted to address some of the myths and talk more about all of the good stuff rapeseed oil brings to your health and your kitchen.

Balance of healthy fats

Rapeseed oil has an excellent balance of different fats which support our general health and well-being, including heart health and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels, brain, skin and eye tissue development. It also has the lowest saturated fat of any culinary oil at 6%, compared to olive oil 14%, butter 51%, coconut oil 91%. Read more about fats here.

 

Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid that we get from our diets to regulate cholesterol, aid brain and eye health as well as other bodily metabolic functions. It is found in certain nuts and seeds, including rapeseed, with a content of 10% in cold pressed rapeseed oil, compared to nothing in many oils including palm, sunflower and coconut oils, and only 1% in olive oil.

Not only is cold pressed rapeseed oil the only high temperature culinary oil to contain Omega-3, it also has the perfect balance of Omega-6 which we need in small amounts in our diet. We require around two parts of Omega-6 for every one part of Omega-3 – the exact ratio found in cold pressed rapeseed oil. It’s an important balance to strike for good health, but we often see it go off course – especially in the case of highly processed western diets which can result in people consuming excessive amounts of Omega 6 – leading to negative health outcomes like poor heart health, inflammatory disease and depression.

Enriched with vitamins

An excellent source of vitamins E, K and provitamin A – cold pressed rapeseed oil is a great way to consume small amounts of these daily vitamins for general health.

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps maintain healthy skin and eyes, whilst serving as a natural immune booster. Vitamin K regulates blood clotting, whilst provitamin A (also known as

a carotenoid) is an important antioxidant in the prevention of various types of cancers, as well as playing a crucial role in heart and eye health.

Sunflower oil is a very good source of Vitamin E at 73%, with rapeseed and olive oils at 30%, whilst coconut oil only has 1%. Cold pressed rapeseed oil and other brassica crops are good sources of vitamin K. Whilst rapeseed oil has around 5 times the antioxidant properties of Carotenoids (provitamin A) compared to olive oil.

Powered by Plant Sterols

Plant sterols are natural, fat-soluble compounds found in plants that are very efficient at reducing cholesterol levels. They are considered to be the most effective single food that can lower cholesterol as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle.

Rapeseed oil is an excellent source of these healthy compounds, with over double the sterol content of extra virgin cold pressed olive oil. Much of the plant sterol properties are lost in refined oils, but our cold pressing method ensures that Mellow Yellow maintains these cholesterol-reducing properties, making it a preferable choice for health in comparison to refined rapeseed oil. Interestingly, the plant sterols that are lost in the refined rapeseed oil process, are isolated and sold on to food manufacturers, to add back into products allowing them to claim the health benefit: “contains plant sterols.” An unnecessary complication some might argue!

Erucic acid

Erucic acid is a bitter-tasting, mono-unsaturated fatty acid produced in many green plants, constituting 30 to 60% of the total fatty acid content of mustard seed and traditional rapeseed varieties. There has been much speculation on the negative effects of erucic acid on human health, though no confirmed negative health effects have been formally documented in humans.

This combination of bitterness and potential health concerns have led to many varieties of rapeseed oil being naturally bred with lower levels of erucic acid (with a legal maximum level of under 2% for culinary rapeseed oil), resulting in a more subtle, nutty flavour. At Mellow Yellow, the content is in the region of less than 0.02% – a result of the rigorous testing we carry out on the best quality seeds before we press a single drop of oil.

The difference is Mellow Yellow

We believe a healthy, varied and balanced diet trumps the wide array of manufactured nutritional supplements you can buy off the shelf. It’s championing home cooking instead of processed food. And making authentic ingredients that are grown ethically and sustainably for health and not quick financial gain. That’s the Yellow Mellow ethos. That’s the Mellow Yellow value.

We hope you try our Rapeseed oil in your recipes, bring a little heat to the table with our subtle award-winning Chilli Oil and use our delicious salad dressings to add flavour and support the digestion of fat-soluble vitamins in your salads.

Why not browse our recipes and try something new? Not only will you be getting great quality and value for money, but a big win for health too

Global pandemics, inflation, conflicts, food shortages, climate change…. there’s no denying the fact that the world faces multiple challenges right now, many of which are having a big impact on the cost of living and consequently, the cost of food.

Here at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, we’ve seen first-hand how this has impacted production lines – raising the price tag for everyone along the way, and eventually you – the end consumer. We’ve fought hard to keep the cost of our Mellow Yellow Rapeseed Oil and dressings as low as possible and we wanted to share a little bit about how (and why) we’ve chosen to do that.

Making good quality rapeseed oil accessible

Food brings people together and is a wonderful salve during testing times. A symbol of a life shared, cooking is a part of who we are, and we firmly believe that putting a great meal on the table, made with quality ingredients, shouldn’t cost a small fortune.

There are a few reasons why we’ve seen the prices of culinary oils explode in the last two years. The Ukrainian conflict, combined with the extreme heat and wildfires in the Mediterranean have led to huge inflationary pressures, with prices doubling in many cases. Whilst the initial shocks of the conflict have somewhat subsided, the continued difficulties in olive oil producing regions due to extreme weather conditions and disease destroying olive trees, is leading to a longer-term shortage of olive oil globally, with escalating price increases as a result.

While many oils have increased in price, at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow we have manged to keep price rises to an absolute minimum. This of course, hasn’t come without challenges! The cost of our electricity tripled at one point and the price of our glass bottles increased dramatically due to the high energy used to manufacture glass. It’s been tricky at times, but we have managed to pick our way through the hurdles to avoid the difficult scenario of hefty price increases and wage decreases, ensuring that our loyal team continue to have fair and reasonable pay. And you – our loyal customers – can continue to enjoy Farrington’s Mellow Yellow in all of your favourite dishes.

The graph below illustrates how Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil compares to a leading brand of olive oil over the last two years, showing that you can continue enjoying the wonderful taste, versatility, health and sustainable values of Mellow Yellow, without costing the earth.

 

This next graph shows a similar story with our delicious chilli oil which is gaining a loyal following of customers who enjoy something a little warmer in their recipes or simply drizzled over pizza, salad and favourite meals.

 

This final graph shows how Farrington’s Mellow Yellow dressings remain excellent value for money in comparison to other leading brands. We have compared prices against similar products, but it is only a Mellow Yellow dressing that is made from unrefined cold pressed rapeseed oil, with great quality ingredients and absolutely ZERO additives, preservatives, or artificial stabilisers.

There are of course cheaper alternative dressings, but many of these come with a long list of processed ingredients. Mellow Yellow dressings are made just as you would do at home, but with our thoughtful ingredient profile and delicious flavours, you can leave the hard work to us and simply enjoy drizzling Farrington’s Mellow Yellow on your favourite salads!

 

Whatever your choice in oils and salad dressings, if you haven’t already tried the delicious flavours of Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, now is the perfect opportunity to search them out knowing that not everything good costs the earth. And if you’re an existing customer who is enjoying Mellow Yellow products in your home cooking, we would like to give you our heartfelt thanks for supporting our family business. We hope that our great values continue to inspire you!

Here at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, we are very proud of the delicious range of rapeseed oils and salad dressings produced on our farm. Ever since launching Mellow Yellow in 2005 as the first cold pressed rapeseed oil in Britain to be sown, grown, pressed and bottled on the farm, I have been driven by the ambition to produce the very best we can; to create sustainable food with quality and integrity at its heart. From our small beginnings producing a few bottles a year, to today, with the support of our dedicated team in our factory at Bottom Farm, those values remain as important today as they were on day one.

Over the coming months, we’ll be sharing with you some of the core values behind Mellow Yellow. Because in the current climate, we believe that value is imperative to get right – for you, our valued consumer, but also for everyone involved in the journey from seed to bottle.

It could be the health values of Mellow Yellow, which as a cold pressed rapeseed oil has the lowest saturated fat of any culinary oil; is high in Omega-3; and packed with cholesterol busting plant sterols (over twice as much found in extra virgin olive oil, for example). Then there is value for money. At a time when the price of food is rising alongside the escalating cost of living, Farrington’s Mellow Yellow products offer exceptional value in comparison to many alternatives, some of which have more than doubled in cost.

We’ll look at the environmental and social values of Mellow Yellow, which as an oil grown from British rapeseed to LEAF Marque standards sets the bar for others to follow. The appreciation for our team – the heart and soul of our business – all of whom are signed up to the Living Wage Foundation, ensuring jobs that are valued with fair pay for all. Indeed, we are delighted to be accredited by the Good Business Charter and VERY proud to be a recipient of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development.

Lastly, let’s not forget the values of Farrington’s Mellow Yellow in your kitchen; as an excellent roasting oil with its high smoke point, or its subtle nutty flavour – a truly versatile ingredient for so many recipes. And our delicious salad dressings – each made with quality, additive-free ingredients, so you can confidently drizzle onto salads and into marinades, knowing there’s nothing unrecognisable in our quality blends.

People often ask us what they can use their bottle of Mellow Yellow for, so we created a huge bank of recipes to inspire you to get creative in the kitchen. From breakfast and baking to dairy-free, family meals, dips (and everything else in between) there’s plenty of inspiring ways to enjoy Mellow Yellow and try something new.

Value for people and planet is at the heart of everything we do here at Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, and I hope you’ll join us as we share more about the importance of values to us as a business.

Duncan Farrington.

Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil is a fantastically healthy choice for your cooking oil, so we know that lots of people choose our products when they are following various diets, for example, Weight Watchers, Slimming World, the 5:2 diet and many others.

In order to make it as simple as possible for those following these diets, we have worked out the nutritional information for the full Mellow Yellow range depending on the diet you’re following. If you would any other nutritional information about our range of products, please get in touch with us on info@farrington-oils.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you would like to learn more about the nutritional properties of Mellow Yellow Rapeseed Oil, we have a number of articles written by The British Nutrition Foundation:

– Introduction to Healthy Fats

Importance of Fats

– Comparison of Different Culinary Oils

“Salads are good for us.”

 

Everyone agrees with this statement as we are encouraged to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables, including salads, every day. Salads provide an essential source of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and fibre, as well as being a delicious meal or accompaniment to meals. So why are we telling you to never eat a salad naked?

As people become more aware of healthy diets, the desire for low fat, low sugar or low salt meals and ingredients increases. This is especially so with oils, mayonnaises and salad dressings as ‘low fat’ or single calorie sprays become increasingly popular. At Farrington’s Mellow Yellow we often speak to customers who are keen to eat a healthy low-fat diet, to the extent that they don’t like to put salad dressings or mayonnaise on their salad with the aim of reducing their fat intake. The logic and ambition may be good, but a quest to reduce calorie intake by eating a salad un-dressed actually deprives people of the fantastic health promoting nutrition locked up in the salad. Not only is a fat required to absorb the nutrition within a salad, dressing a salad makes it more interesting and delicious to eat, helping you to make it a regular and enjoyable part of your diet. Also consideration should be given to the choice of fat used, but more on that later.

Salads are a wonderful source of vitamins and carotenoids. Vitamins play vital roles in health and body metabolism, along with their interaction with minerals required in the diet. We need to take vitamins in small regular amounts in our diet as the body can not store them and they can even be harmful if taken in excess. Vitamins are either fat soluble or water soluble, with Vitamins A, D, E and K being fat soluble. Salads contain fat soluble vitamins, so unless a salad is dressed with an oil-based dressing or mayonnaise, it is very difficult for the body to absorb these vitamins. By eating a healthy, balanced diet, there is no need for vitamin supplements to be taken.

Carotenoids are the naturally-occurring pigments in foods, with fruits and vegetables providing most of the carotenoids in the human diet. They play important roles in the body as powerful anti-oxidants; from the prevention of various types of cancers and chronic heart disease, to the maintenance of healthy eyesight. Carrots, known to help us see in the dark, get their orange colour from Alpha and Beta-Carotene. While the yellow colour of Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil comes from carotenoids called Luteins, containing around five times more than in extra virgin olive oil.*

Carotenoids are fat-soluble compounds so, just like the fat-soluble vitamins, to get the best nutritional benefit from colourful salad ingredients such as peppers, carrots, spinach and tomatoes, dress your salad with a fat to allow your body to absorb the carotenoids. However, research has shown that the type of fat eaten also affects how well we can absorb carotenoids from food. For example, a salad dressing made with an oil rich in mono-unsaturated fats, such as cold pressed rapeseed oil, absorbs more carotenoids compared to a dressing made with oils rich in saturated or poly-unsaturated fats, such as soybean, palm, sunflower or coconut oils for example. So not only should you ensure your salad is dressed with a fat, you should try to ensure the fat is rich in mono-unsaturates.

 

 

Why you should never eat a salad naked:

– Adding fat to salad allows your body to process the fat-soluble vitamins

– Using an oil rich in mono-unsaturated, such as cold pressed rapeseed oil, helps the body absorb anti-oxidant caratonoids

– Adding flavour helps motivate you to eat healthy salads regularly by making them more enjoyable

 

 

So, whether you are a purest and enjoy your salad simply drizzled with oil, like to pimp up a lettuce leaf creatively with a salad dressing, or if you prefer an indulgent dollop of mayonnaise; remember never eat a salad naked. The best dressed salads not only taste better, but make their nutritional delights all the more enjoyable. And just pause to think if a single calorie spray oil, a low fat salad dressing or mayonnaise really is as healthy as you first thought? Not to mention what actually goes into making some of those so-called healthy options…

But as far as the clothing you chose to wear, or not, while enjoying your favourite salad, we’ll leave that up to you.

 

* Crude rapeseed oil contains up to 95 mg/kg carotenoids, comprising about 85-90% luteins and 7-10% as carotene (Gunstone 2004). Extra virgin olive oil also contains luteins and carotene, but at levels of up to 20mg/kg only (Bosku, 2009) i.e., it only contains around one fifth the carotenoid antioxidant properties of rapeseed oil.
Bosku D., (2009). Olive oil Minor Constituents and Health CRC press p52.
Gunstone F D., (2004). Rapeseed and Canola Oil; Productrion, Processing, Properties and Uses, Blackwell Publishing

Cooking oils are a type of fat. Fat is a macronutrient (like protein and carbohydrate) that is made up of fatty acids. With so many different cooking oils available, most people don’t know which oil they should be using in their cooking for the healthiest results and often ask us what is the healthiest oil to cook with . This article will help to explain the different factors you should consider when choosing which oil to cook with.

 

 

What should we consider when looking at what is the healthiest oil to cook with?

When trying to decide which oil to cook with, we need to look at the following things. (We’ll explain each one a bit later on!)

– Saturated fat

– Unsaturated fat

– Trans fat

– Omega 3, 6 and 9

– Smoke point

– Vitamins and minerals found in the oil

 

What is fat?

Fat is a macronutrient (like protein and carbohydrate) and is made up of fatty acids. These fatty acids can be classified as saturated or unsaturated depending on their chemical structure. Unsaturated fatty acids include monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids.

All fats provide 9 calories (kcal) per gram, regardless of the levels of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, the big difference is the effect these fats have on your cholesterol levels so we need to ensure that we eat the healthiest fat we can.

Fat is a good source of energy and we need some fat in our diet to help us absorb the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.

Within the body, fatty acids form part of our cell membranes and fat also helps to insulate and protect our internal organs, contributing towards maintaining our body temperature and is involved in lots of body processes such as the development of our brains and the communications which occur between different cells. Cholesterol is needed to produce bile acids, which help us to digest food, and also some of our hormones.

 

What is Saturated Fat?

Saturated fat is found in foods such as fatty meats, hard cheese and butter.

High intakes of saturated fat have been shown to raise levels of ‘bad’ (LDL – Low Density Lipoproteins) cholesterol in the blood. High blood cholesterol increases the risk of developing heart disease and stroke by building up in our arteries, causing them to narrow. It is best to eat foods that contain less saturated fat.

An easy way to tell if your oil contains high levels of saturated fat is whether it is solid at room temperature, if it is, it most likely contains a high amount of saturated fat.

Chemically speaking, saturated fats have don’t have any double bonds between their carbon atoms in the fatty acid chain.

 

What is Unsaturated Fat?

Often called ‘good fat’, unsaturated fat help to maintain a healthy cholesterol level and have even been known to help lower levels of harmful cholesterol. Unsaturated fats are either monounsaturated or polyunsaturated.

Our bodies are able to make most of the specific fatty acids we need apart from two polyunsaturated fatty acids which we must get from our diet. These two fatty acids are alpha linolenic acid (an omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acid) and linoleic acid (an omega 6 polyunsaturated fatty acid). Our bodies need these for brain development, growth and for a healthy immune system.

Omega 3 and 6 are called essential fatty acids as we need to obtain small amounts of them from our diet. Alpha linolenic acid is found in rapeseed, walnut and soya oils and spreads made from these. Linoleic is also found in plant based oils such as sunflower, corn, peanut, rapeseed, olive, safflower, sesame, walnut and soya oil and spreads made from these. Both of the essential fatty acids are present in smaller amounts in foods such as meat, eggs and oily fish. Ideally our bodies need Omega 3 and Omega 6 in the right balance of one part Omega 3 to every two parts Omega 6.

 

What about Trans Fat?

These are the worst types of fat and should be avoided wherever possible as they have been known to increase blood cholesterol levels. Typically, foods with hydrogenated oils likely contain trans fats, such as fried foods, takeaways and hard margarines.

 

As you can see, the levels of saturated and unsaturated fat in your cooking oil is very important. We have broken down the most common oils in the simple table below for you.

what

* Ideal balance of Omega 3 to Omega 6.

 

Does Smoke Point matter?

Other than the levels of different fats in your oil, if you are cooking with oil, you need to ensure that the smoke point is suitable. It can be dangerous to take an oil over its smoke point as this can cause the chemical structure to break down, which is why we always recommend cold pressed rapeseed oil for high temperature cooking as it has a smoke point of 230°C.

 

Are Vitamins and minerals found in oil?

Some oils, especially those that are cold pressed, can contain naturally occurring vitamins and minerals. Plant sterols can also be found in some oils, learn more about these in our blog post. 

Cold pressed rapeseed oil contains vitamin E, vitamin K and catotenoids including provitamin A. Vitamin E is an important antioxidant and vitamin K is needed for efficient blood clotting. Provitamin A is essential for healthy skin, eyesight, growth and reproduction and, carotenoids contain luteins which are an antioxidant and give the oil its distinctive yellow colour.

 

So what is the healthiest oil to cook with?

We want an oil with low saturated fat, high unsaturated fat (including both polyunsaturated and monounsaturated), a high smoke point and containing as many other vitamins and minerals as possible.

The obvious choice has to be cold pressed rapeseed oil (but we would say that, wouldn’t we!) From the table, we can see that cold pressed rapeseed oil has the lowest saturated fat levels, a good balance of both types of unsaturated fat, a high smoke point and also contains vitamin E and plant sterols.

what is the healthiest oil to cook with legendwhat is the healthiest oil to cook with fat comparison

 

All oils contain a mixture of unsaturated fat and saturated fat and the healthiest ones to use are those with the lowest saturated fat and highest unsaturated fat.

So, if you’re asked what is the healthiest oil to cook with, you now know that you want an oil with a low saturated fat content and high in unsaturated fat. Cold pressed rapeseed oil is ideal, find out more here and find stockists here.

We are often asked at Farrington’s what is meant by the term ‘cold pressed’ in Farrington’s Mellow Yellow cold pressed rapeseed oil? A good question that does need some explaining.

 

Extracting oil from seeds and fruits such as rapeseed and olives is one of the world’s oldest forms of food processing. This along with grinding seeds into flour from wheat or making alcohol from barley for beer, or grapes for wine. The traditional method to extract oil is by mechanical ‘cold pressing’. If you have enjoyed a Mediterranean holiday, you may have seen an old big wooden olive oil press in the middle of a village square. Fresh olives would be poured into the press, a donkey would walk in a continual circle and the press would squeeze the fruit until the oil came trickling out.

In Britain we don’t grow olive trees, but we do grow rapeseed and have done since the Romans first brought it here over 2000 years ago. No doubt they would have used something similar to the donkey driven press to extract oil from the seed. However, for the last hundred plus years, oil has been extracted from seeds in Britain mainly by the industrialised method known as the ‘pre-press solvent extraction process’. This was developed as a highly efficient system of extracting oil, using high temperatures around 85°C, with the addition of a solvent (think of nail varnish remover or paint thinners), following which the oil is degummed, neutralised, dried, bleached and deodorised. Although this is a complicated process, it is a highly efficient way to extract large volumes of refined oil cheaply, with the resulting bland, colourless oil being ideal for many food manufacturing processes, as it does not flavour or colour the foods being made.

Many oils are produced in this way the world over, including olive oil, sunflower oil, groundnut oil, corn oil, rice bran oil, as well as rapeseed oil. 

It wasn’t until the advent of package holidays in the 1970’s, that we started to become aware of more exotic types of culinary oil and other exotic foods. This resulted in British food starting to get a bit more colourful and a little less bland. By the time I launched Farrington’s Mellow Yellow in 2005 as Britain’s first ‘seed-to-bottle’ cold pressed rapeseed oil, people were happy to give cold pressed rapeseed oil a go.

 

cold pressed close up

 

Going back to the original question of what does ‘cold pressed’ mean and why is it better…

Firstly, cold pressed is just that, we simply squeeze the seeds mechanically to extract the pure oil, without any additional heat being used, then pass the oil through filters a bit like a large tea strainer to remove any sediment. This means that the process is slow and inefficient compared to the refined process, so less oil is extracted from the seed. As a comparison, our cold pressed rapeseed oil leaves around 12% oil in the seed, whereas the industrialised method will only leave around 1%. However, nothing is wasted. Once the seed has been pressed, the leftover seed husks are shaped into rape meal pellets and given to farm animals as nutritious feed.

Additionally, cold pressed oils retain their natural character as nature intended. The most obvious being a superior taste and appearance compared to a refined oil. Cold-pressed rapeseed oil has a mild taste with subtle nutty or seedy flavours. Farrington’s Mellow Yellow, for example, has flavours of raw groundnuts, hazelnuts or sunflower seeds, whilst this flavour is underpinned by buttery undertones. Some people can taste the buttery flavour and not the nutty one. Mellow Yellow is also clean and light on the tongue, with no bitter aftertaste. These subtle or mellow flavours make it ideal to be used as a salad dressing oil, allowing the ingredients it is mixed with to come through, giving a different character to a dressing made with an olive oil, for example. Whilst the same mellow flavour makes the oil ideal for all types of cooking from baking breads and cakes, to seafood recipes and, also for roasting and stir-frying vegetables. 

 

Rapeseed oil is naturally yellow in colour hence the name ‘Mellow Yellow.’ This is down to the presence of carotenoids. Carotenoids play important roles in the prevention of various types of cancers, heart disease and eye health. People are increasingly looking for benefits from natural sources of carotenoids found in several unprocessed foods. Cold pressed rapeseed oil mainly consists of a carotenoid group called luteins, important for healthy eye function. This is almost completely removed in refined oils.

Plant sterols are another health promoting micronutrient found in cold pressed rapeseed oil, shown to help lower cholesterol levels. Although the sterol levels in rapeseed oil are too low to make official health claims, it is an excellent source compared to other oils. Again, however many of these important micronutrients are lost in refined oils.

 

Whether it is the delicious taste, the wonderful colour, the knowledge that you are enjoying pure, unadulterated food with its naturally healthy properties, or just the fact that a cold pressed oil reminds you of holidaying in Greece, there are no end of reasons to use Mellow Yellow cold pressed rapeseed oil. There is a genuine difference in the provenance of cold pressed oils compared to their bland and less exciting refined versions. And, research shows that consuming cold-pressed unrefined rapeseed oil is an important part of a healthy diet and lifestyle.  

 

For more information on our Mellow Yellow Cold Pressed Rapeseed oil, click here and to find out where to buy our Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil you can use out Store Finder here.