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Grape Seed Oil

Grape seed oil is extracted from the seeds of grapes. In the twentieth century, grape seed oil began to be processed and sold in much higher volume, primarily in the United States and Europe. Many stores sell pure grape seed oil for various applications.  The oil is known for being light in color and neutral in flavor, with a hint of nuttiness. It is a polyunsaturated oil, an excellent source of Vitamin E, valuable antioxidants, and essential fatty acids, such as Linoleic acid, (also known as Omega 6).

Like other oils, grape seed oil should be stored in a cool dark place until it is used, unless it has been heavily stabilized. For people who use it rarely, refrigeration is best. Although grape seed oil may congeal slightly, it will go rancid much more slowly when kept in the fridge.

Grape seed oil has a very high smoking point, approximately (421 °F) (Olive oil smoke point is 406 °F), so it can be safely used to cook at high temperatures, such as stir-frying, sautéing and deep-frying. The smoke point is the temperature at which visible gaseous vapor from the heating of oil becomes evident. It is traditionally used as a marker for when decomposition of oil begins to take place. Since decomposition incurs chemical changes that may not only result in reduced flavor and nutritional value but also the generation of harmful cancer causing compounds (oxygen radicals) that are harmful to your health, it is important to not heat oil past its smoke point. Inhaling the vapors can also be damaging.

In foods, grape seed oil has numerous uses. It can also be included in dressings and sauces, and since it emulsifies very well, it does not generally separate when used to make things like mayonnaise. The flavor is also low profile, allowing one to focus on the main component of the dish. Culinary grape seed oil can also be flavored with the addition of things like peppers, truffle shavings, and herbs.

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