Moisturizer you can cook with
August 8, 2016
It’s kinda weird to head into the bathroom and scoop up a spoonful of your moisturizer to saute something in, but I’ve done it.
That’s because I’ve become a devotee of coconut oil. Admittedly, I use it much more for exterior purposes than for cooking, but it’s handy to have when you’re out of vegetable oil, olive oil, shortening, and don’t want to saute in butter, as happened to me recently. (No, I NEVER run out of butter. I grab a bunch when it’s on sale and keep it in the freezer, and when I open the last pound, I buy some more. There are things of which one must just Not Run Out, and butter, coffee and vodka are three of those things.)
Anyway, coconut oil has 117 calories in a tablespoon (canola is 134, and butter is 102, while olive oil is 119), which is not out of line for other fats, but all that fat is saturated, if that’s an issue for you. Its smoke point is 350 degrees, same as butter or canola or olive oil, but unlike butter, it doesn’t brown as it heats in the pan, and like canola oil, it’s a neutral taste.
But it’s as a moisturizer and similar uses it gets the most use at my house.
I keep a little plastic tub of it with a lid in the shower. When I start my shower, I turn on the faucet in the sink and let it get hot, then run a couple of inches of water in the sink and plop the coconut oil tub into it. By the time I turn the shower off, enough of it has melted I can use it as a body moisturizer. I just smooth it on, while I’m still wet, and then pat dry. Keeps my skin moist until the next day.
I use it to take my makeup off. Smear it on, wipe it off with tissue, then wash your face as usual. I have also used it as a nighttime moisturizer. It’s also a great cuticle cream, and I’ve used it for a hand cream as well; it’s greasy for a minute, but then the oily finish seems to absorb into your skin. And it’s the best thing going during sinus season when your nose is raw from tissue overuse.
Got a sunburn? Slather on some coconut oil. Chapped lips? Ditto. Chafed spot, or a scrape? The same. It also makes a great diaper rash ointment. You can also rub a bunch of it into your feet and then put on socks (so you don’t leave greasy little footprints everywhere) to keep your skin soft between pedicures.
And it’s additive-free!
Coconut oil will generally run you between $5 and $8 a quart, and a quart will last you a month and a half or longer, using it the way I use it.
You ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em pick you up some coconut oil, and rest assured in the idea you can still make biscuits if you run out of shortening.