Babassu Oil

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Babassu Oil 2017-04-10T19:41:33+00:00

Growing wild in tropical North eastern Brazil, the babassu is a tall, feathery palm bearing bunches of up to 600 nuts. When these nuts fall to the ground, they are collected in baskets by women known as ‘babassu breakers’ who crack open the very hard shells with axes and wooden clubs and extract the kernels inside to produce Babassu Oil. The palm is considered to be one of the most productive oil crops in the world. It fruits after about 7 years and reaches its peak between 35 and 40 years. In a year, one Babassu palm can produce up to 2000 fruits. The light brown fruit are covered with a tough fibrous exocarp surrounding a grey mesocarp containing three to six oil bearing seeds.

Babassu Oil, also known as babassu wax, babassu butter and cusi oil, is light yellow when liquid and creamy white when solid. It is very similar to Coconut Oil except that it has very little odour and is a soft solid, more fluffy and buttery than the much firmer coconut oil. It is increasingly being used to replace coconut oil in many products like food, soap and cosmetics. Like the coconut palm, the Babassu palm is a multipurpose tree and for centuries different parts have been used to make fuel, food like flour and oil, building materials and mats. The Babassu trade supports more than 2 million rural Brazilians and in some regions the nuts are a form of currency.

Babassu Oil contains five acids: lauric (50%) myristic (20%) palmitic (11%) oleic (10%) and stearic (3.5%) as well as vitamin E and phytosterols.

 

Babassu Oil is an excellent all-round moisturiser for dry or oily skins. It may be a better choice than Coconut Oil for acne because it is non-comedogenic. Benefits include reduced redness, soothed itchiness and because it is a light but penetrating oil, it doesn’t leave a greasy film. It nourishes hair and skin, being protective, cleansing and anti-inflammatory. It also helps with skin turnover as the naturally occurring plant sterols help renew skin cells. Babassu Oil melts on contact with the skin and the transference of heat outwards has a cooling effect on the skin, which is good for dry, parched skin and inflammatory conditions.

The high lauric acid in Babassu Oil confers many of the same advantages as coconut oil. Lauric acid is a good source of energy and gets converted to monolaurin either on or in the body. It provides antifungal, antiviral and antimicrobial protection. The myristic acid is anti-inflammatory and the palmitic acid can help nourish and protect the hair. 

Refined Babassu Oil is used by the cosmetic industry in the production of moisturisers, soaps, creams, hair and body products and lipsticks. The lauric and myristic acids help to produce a cleansing, fluffy lather in cleansing solutions. It is a non-drying oil used in food in baking, sweets and icing. It is also used in medicine and for industrial purposes.

Babassu is a healthy alternative to refined vegetable oils for cooking and is suitable for adding to shampoo or as a neat application to skin (even for babies,) hair and scalp and as a hot oil treatment.

Healing Skin salve
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Use anywhere skin needs soothing and healing, like rashes, sun burn, bites, cuts and scrapes, or use as a massage.
Healing Skin salve
Votes: 3
Rating: 5
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Print Recipe
Use anywhere skin needs soothing and healing, like rashes, sun burn, bites, cuts and scrapes, or use as a massage.
    Ingredients
    Ingredients
      Instructions
      1. Gently melt wax in a bain marie (double boiler) and as it starts to melt, add the Coconut or Babassu oil (or half and half,) and the butters, then the oils and stir well.Lastly, add the essential oil.
      2. Decant into small clean pots.
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      Vegetable Curry with Babassu
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      Vegetable Curry with Babassu
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        Ingredients
        • A few cups vegetables see recipe notes (below) for suggestions
        • 2 onions
        • 3 cloves garlic
        • 350 ml vegetable stock
        • 2 tablespoons Babassu Oil
        • 2 teaspoons curry powder
        • 1 teaspoon cumin
        • 1 teaspoon coriander
        • ½ teaspoon ginger powder
        • sea salt
        • black pepper freshly ground
        • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)
        Ingredients
        • A few cups vegetables see recipe notes (below) for suggestions
        • 2 onions
        • 3 cloves garlic
        • 350 ml vegetable stock
        • 2 tablespoons Babassu Oil
        • 2 teaspoons curry powder
        • 1 teaspoon cumin
        • 1 teaspoon coriander
        • ½ teaspoon ginger powder
        • sea salt
        • black pepper freshly ground
        • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)
          Instructions
          1. Peel and chop the garlic and onions. Wash and drain the vegetables and cut into bite sized pieces.
          2. Heat the Babassu Oil in a large pan and gently fry the onion and garlic and then add the spices to bring out their flavor. Add the vegetables, one at a time, starting with things like carrots that take longer to cook.
          3. Cook for a few minutes without browning. Sprinkle with a bit of sea salt and then add the stock. Add water if necessary and cover with a lid
          4. Cook for about 15-20 minutes, until vegetables are just tender.
          5. Taste and add more salt if necessary and if you want a stronger curry taste, add the lemon juice.
          6. Serve on rice, millet or couscous.
          7. Note: If you don't have Babassu Oil you can use Coconut Oil instead.
          Recipe Notes

          Vegetable suggestions: broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, celery, zucchini, peas, beans, pumpkin, sweet potato

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          Whipped Babassu Cream
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          Rating: 4.25
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          Whipped Babassu Cream
          Votes: 4
          Rating: 4.25
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            Ingredients
            Ingredients
              Instructions
              1. Put all the ingredients into a bowl and whip together on high speed until light and frothy.
              2. Decant into a clean jar and store in the fridge if you live in a warm climate.
              3. Note: Do not melt the Babassu Oil first or it will not whip.
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