Good Fats vs. Bad Fats

Island Epicure


The  convictions that all fats are bad and that we should throw out egg yolks seems to have run their course. Now we’re learning that some saturated fats are actually necessary. We’re reading a lot about the good Omega-3 fats and tsk-tsking Omega 6 fats–bad but only because we get too much Omega 6, especially in fast foods and fried foods, ready-made foods like bottled salad dressings, canola oil and generic “vegetable” oils, and in processed foods. Canola oil claims omega 3 fat, but contains more Omega 6.  Olive oil is a healthier source of Omega 3.

I no longer use canola oil or Splenda, preferring the healthier olive oil and coconut sugar, Glycemic Index 35, instead of cane sugar, G.I. 100. Now the cookbooks Minglement has been selling for me need revision. That doesn’t mean you have to toss out my Wholegrain and Gluten Free book, or my Soups and Stews book. Just substitute olive oil for canola oil. I especially like importer, fellow Islander, and son-in-law Richard Osborne’s Turkish cold-pressed, extra virgin olive oil for salad dressings, available at the IGA, or the lighter Spanish oil from Thriftway for cooking. I buy the 3-litre box straight from Rich.

Most of my old family recipes, like my Welsh grandma Fannie Wey Brunson’s Carrot Biscuits are fine with oil instead of shortening, and with gluten free or low-gluten flour. Barley flour is lower in gluten and behaves well in baking. We like the taste and texture of it. I and those of my descendants who are gluten-sensitive have no trouble with barley flour. If I were making these for someone with celiac, I’d use sorghum flour with a bit of cornstarch to smooth the texture.

Grandma’s Carrot Biscuits
Preheat oven to 450 degrees

2 cups barley flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon salt

Stir in:
2 long carrots, grated

Stir briskly to combine carrots and flour mixture and then fork-beat to combine and stir in:
¼ cup Spanish extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup milk
1 egg
Stir in 1 Tablespoon honey

Honey will keep leftover biscuits, if there are any, from growing stale. Drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Place on center rack in hot oven. Bake 13 to 15 minutes. The biscuits should be nicely brown with darker brown peaks. Eat them warm with real butter, which supplies virtuous Omega-3 fat, and tastes better than any substitute.  Eat these warm from the oven and generously spread with real butter. Yum! They go well with baked chicken or beans.