|Lemon Bars made with Coconut Oil|
As our family aims to eat healthier foods, I am gradually phasing out less-than-desirable ingredients. Recently, I've been decreasing the amount of high fructose corn syrup in our diet. This goes along with my overall goal to limit the amount of processed food that we eat. I have taken on this goal slowly--bit by bit--because it can be overwhelming (and expensive!). I want healthy eating to be a way of life for us, not just a phase where we try really hard and then burn out because of too much whole wheat pasta. :)
All that to say, I was excited when Tropical Traditions offered me some of their Organic Virgin Coconut Oil to review (and some to give away to you!).
I used it yesterday for the first time when I made Lindsay's Healthy Lemon Bars. As you can see from the picture above, they turned out fabulously! These lemon bars are a diversion from your typical lemon bar--they have a nutty bar-like bottom with a tart-yet-sweet lemon topping. And we loved them!
A few notes about coconut oil:
1) Coconut oil is solid at temperatures below 76 degrees Fahrenheit and liquid if above that temperature. Since I'm in Florida, I have yet to see the oil I received from Tropical Traditions solidify! :) However, when I opened my package I was happy to find it very clean with no oil spills--a problem friends have told me about when ordering coconut oil.
2) It can be used as a substitute in most of your recipes that call for butter/margarine/shortening (in it's solid form) or for any oil in it's liquid form. Although keep in mind that it will lend a coconut-y flavor to your dish (which I'm guessing would be superb in curry dishes...)! I'm looking forward to using it in my Blueberry Zucchini Bread very soon!
3) Coconut oil is heat stable and can be used for sauteeing and frying.
4) It has a 2-year shelf life (I love that!).
I also love how it smells. :)
I will say that the one downside to coconut oil is the cost. The 32-ounce bottle of organic virgin coconut oil that Tropical Traditions is giving away here currently sells for $27.50 on their website. If I'm going to consistently use coconut oil in my cooking during our present "Less Project" status, I'm going to have to find a way to make it easy on our budget! Tropical Traditions does have frequent sales on all of their products, which you can be notified of when you are subscribed to their newsletter.
If you're curious for some more in-depth discussion about coconut oil and it's potential benefits/risks and uses, check out some of these posts:
FAQs on Coconut Oil And How To Use It by Kitchen Stewardship
What's the Deal About Coconut Oil? by Kitchen Stewardship
All The Wonderful Uses Of Coconut Oil by Passionate Homemaking
*THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED* And without further ado, here's how you can win a lovely 32 ounce bottle of Tropical Tradition's Organic Virgin Coconut Oil:
Mandatory Entry: Subscribe to the Tropical Traditions newsletter and leave me a comment letting me know you did.
Additional Entries (leave a comment for each):
- Tell me how you would use/do use coconut oil in your diet!
- Follow @TropTraditions on Twitter
- AND, in honor of my debut on facebook, like Alicia's Homemaking on facebook for an entry!
NOTE: Please leave me your email address in your comment, otherwise I cannot notify you if you win (very sad!).
I will choose a winner one week from today. :) This giveaway is open to US/Canadian residents.
Disclosure: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.