Sesame oil is extremely popular for its variety of uses and distinctive flavor. Used primarily in Asian cooking, this oil comes from sesame seeds that can be prepared for oil extraction in several different ways, like being toasted or pressed. Different preparation methods lead to slightly different oil variations, all of which have many applications. Though sesame oil extraction can be completed in slightly differing ways, the overall process is always pretty similar.
Sesame Oil Extraction Steps: DIY
Although sesame oil is extracted on an industrial scale to meet societal demands, it is a simple procedure that can actually be done at home. Sesame seed plants can even be grown in your garden! Let’s examine the process:
- Cleanse the seeds. If the seeds were growing outside, they are definitely in need of a gentle wash. Thoroughly rinse the seeds to remove any dirt or unwanted impurities.
- Toast the seeds. This can be done on a stovetop in a pan but is easier and more efficient when done in an oven. Preheat your oven to 180°F (82°C). Place the seeds on a baking sheet and toast for five minutes. After the first five minutes, gently stir the seeds around on the tray. Continue baking for another five minutes. The seeds should become a darker shade of brown and should have a noticeable aroma.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Take about ¼ cup of your toasted sesame seeds and add them to a pan with about 1 cup of sunflower oil. Heat this mixture on the stove for approximately two minutes.
- Blend. After the two minutes is up, let the mixture cool. Blend the seeds and the oil together until they are thoroughly combined, forming a paste-like compound. Let this paste sit for about two hours.
- Strain. Grab a cheesecloth and strain the oil from the mixture. Put the strained oil into an airtight container in your refrigerator.
- Use immediately. The created oil can be used immediately after it is done, but you can also store it in your refrigerator for a while if you plan on using it later.
Sesame Oil Extraction Steps: Industrial Manufacturing
On a more large-scale basis, the sesame seed oil is made in oil mills. This process is remarkably similar to the DIY method of oil extraction but does not involve the use of another type of oil, thus the resulting oil purer.
- Cleaning. Just like the DIY method, industrial oil extraction begins with a thorough cleaning of the seeds. This includes removing the bad seeds, stones, dust, and other foreign impurities.
- Dry Roasting. This process dries the seeds and removes any excess water before the pressing process.
- Pressing. After the seeds have been completely dried, they are crushed in a sesame oil expeller press. This removes the oil from the seeds, which is then left to settle for some time.
- Filtration. To separate the seeds from the oil that has been pressed out, the oil is filtered. This makes it easier to refine the oil in the next step.
- Refining. The refining stage is like an extra filtration step. It is filtered to ensure that there are absolutely no unwanted impurities before it goes to packaging.
- Packing. This is the final step of the industrial sesame oil extraction process. The thoroughly filtered, pure oil is packaged and transported to stores for sale.
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