Vegetable Ghee (Vanaspati


Vegetable Ghee
VEGETABLE GHEE, the vegetable alternative to ghee, is an all-purpose cooking fat widely used in the Indian sub-continent and the Middle East. Ghee is made from butter oil, but demand has exceeded supply thus raising its price. Hence the emergence of ghee substitute, vegetable ghee or vanaspati. Originally, vegetable ghee was made from a blend of vegetable oils which was hydrogenated to make it solid, and processed to imitate ghee in texture and flavour. For decades, hydrogenation was essential in the production process. However, due to the trans fatty acids dilemma, partial hydrogenation is no longer viable. Palm oil and its products, with a wide range in natural solid contents, can impart the required solid fats content and texture of vegetable ghee without the need of hydrogenation. At present, palm, soybean, rapeseed and cottonseed oils are the most commonly used oils for vegetable ghee. Because of the wide range of use, vegetable ghee and similar products are marketed under different definitions - vanaspati, vegetable shortening, imitation ghee, artificial butter and so on.


3.) of butter oil (butter without its water). and a supply of good quality palm oil and palm stearin. It is thus comprised almost wholly of a vegetable oil or a mixture of vegetable oils.Palm Oil/Palm Kernel Oil Applications Ingredients Vegetable ghee is basically a vegetable oil made into solid to imitate the characteristics (flavour. The savings can be passed on to the consumers to encourage sales. The products are thus free from trans fatty acids. texture. especially from Malaysia. Other ingredients like flavour. the current effort is to reduce or eliminate the use of hydrogenation process. hydrogenation is used to raise the melting range of a liquid oil(s) so that the oil becomes solid at room temperature. Availability of palm oil and palm stearin Oil palm yields throughout the year. as they pose a health risk. Advantages of Using Palm Oil and Its Products 1. vitamins and antioxidants may be added depending on the food regulations in the country in which the product is sold. etc. Processing Traditionally. It is possible to request customised palm stearin with specific physico-chemical characteristics for various formulations. the cost of production is significantly lower. The trend today is to use formulations that are free from trans fatty acids. Either direct blending or interesterification of oils and fats using palm oil and its products as the major components will achieve this (see Processing Steps). Naturally semi-solid oil Palm oil and palm stearin have natural solids content and therefore require no hydrogenation. trans fatty acids are an inadvertent result of partial hydrogenation and. 2. However. is available at all times of the year. Lower cost of production Without hydrogenation. colour. 10 .

they are dispersed in a small volume of the fat blend and then mixed into the main body of fat under continuous stirring. A temperature between 17oC-28oC and 300-700 rpm pump speed are maintained. colour and other ingredients These ingredients are optional. 11 . 3. Incorporating flavour. Being fatsoluble.Vegetable Ghee (Vanaspati) Manufacturing Process Palm oil and its products do not require hydrogenation to produce vegetable ghee as they have natural solids content. The mixture crystallises quickly with an increase in its viscosity. 2. The ghee produced is free from trans fatty acids. Passing homogenised mixture of oils through a scraped-surface heat exchanger This is usually the A-unit of a margarine processing plant. Processing Steps 1. Homogenising oils/fats or their mixtures The oil or mixture is heated to 70oC in a mixing vessel under continuous stirring to ensure a homogenous melt.

Packaging vegetable ghee The packed product is stored in a warehouse at 25oC-30oC to allow it time to complete crystallisation. Vegetable ghee ready for shipment Vegetable Ghee Manufacturing Process (Modern Method) Melt oils/fats and/or mixture (70°C. 15 min) Homogenise and add flavour and colour (50°-60ºC) Crystallisation in A-unit of a scraped-surface heat exchanger (17°-28°C) Packaging Shipment 12 .Palm Oil/Palm Kernel Oil Applications 4. 5.

Vegetable Ghee (Vanaspati) Solid Fats Content of Vegetable Ghee Basic Trans Free Vegetable Ghee Formulations. Based on Blended and Interesterified Oils and Fats Oil Mixture Blended fats Fat/Oil Composition Palm stearin:Soybean oil 60:40 Palm stearin:Soybean oil 80:20 Consistency Granular with no oil separation Soft and granular with no oil separation Interesterified fats 13 .

9 48.6 34.5 45.4 45.6 43.6 45.Palm Oil/Palm Kernel Oil Applications Slip Melting Point of Trans Free Vegetable Ghee Formulations Slip Melting Point (°C) Sample Direct Blends POs:SBO 40:60 60:40 80:20 POs:SBO 40:60 60:40 80:20 POs:SFO 40:60 60:40 80:20 Interesterified Blends 41.5 38.7 43. SBO = Soybean oil SFO = Sunflower oil Source: Proceedings of the 1997 PORIM Technology Transfer Seminar 14 .8 45.9 41.5 47.7 35.3 39.4 Note: POs = Palm Oil Stearin.4 45.3 48.5 45.6 43.

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