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Old 06-01-2008, 08:49 AM   #1
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Coconut Oil, Coconut Extract, what's the difference

Could anyone tell me what the difference is between coconut oil and coconut extract? My wife has a reciepe for coconut cake and it calls for coconut oil and we can't find any. Can she use coconut extract?

Thanks
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Old 06-01-2008, 10:09 AM   #2
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Coconut oil is an oil in the category of canola or corn oil. Coconut extract is in a different category along with vanilla extract.

I would recommend using canola oil (or other neutral tasting oil) in place of the coconut oil and adding a tiny bit of coconut extract for the flavor.
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Old 06-01-2008, 12:39 PM   #3
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Sometimes flavorings are referred to as oils. I know that in some anise flavored pastries, anise oil is called for which provides a more concentrated form of the anise flavor. These so called "oils" and flavorings are use in candy making. One popular company is LorAnn Oils (lorannoils.com - see super strength flavors). Did the recipe indicate quantity? If is is just a few drops, then it is referring to the concentrated oils. If it is more like a 1/4 cup or more then it is referring to oil in the class of a canola etc. If it is a small amount, then a little more extract will be needed if used as a substitute. See foodsubs.com/Extracts.html for a rough idea of equivalents.

Sorry I couldn't post full URL's to the above resources since I am a fairly new member here. Hope that this is helpful.
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Old 06-01-2008, 07:42 PM   #4
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Coconut oil is marvelous stuff, but you've got to get raw, organic coconut oil. I buy it by the gallon from Mountain Rose Herbs online. Best quality and best price. You can also find it in Asian markets and health food stores. If the recipe calls for coconut oil, this is the kind they mean. It has a light, sweet, delicate taste, like those candy bars of yesteryear, Almond Joy and Mounds. Please do not substitute another oil for this in a coconut cake.
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gadzooks View Post
Coconut oil is marvelous stuff, but you've got to get raw, organic coconut oil. I buy it by the gallon from Mountain Rose Herbs online. Best quality and best price. You can also find it in Asian markets and health food stores. If the recipe calls for coconut oil, this is the kind they mean. It has a light, sweet, delicate taste, like those candy bars of yesteryear, Almond Joy and Mounds. Please do not substitute another oil for this in a coconut cake.
Coconut oil also known as coconut butter is a wonderful fat substitute for butter in baking. It is a solid at room temperature, unless you live east of SF where the temperatures in the summer make it liquid in the summer even in the dark pantry. If it has somewhat liquified, I put it in the fridge for just a minute or two.

I became aware of coconut oil when I reviewed a cook book called "Super Natural Cooking" by Heidi Swanson. I tried it and would never go back to butter in a baking recipe. Everything tastes wonderful. You need 25 percent less of the coconut oil in a recipe than butter. I figured out that you did save calories with it and it is rich in lauric acid which helps brain functioning. Without the help of those DS games!

Defiinitely do not substitute another oil for coconut oil. If you want a substitue, I would use butter, 25 percent more than the recipe calls for the coconut oil.

I get mine in the Oriental food section of my supermarkets. It is Spectrum and it is organic.
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:34 PM   #6
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Oops! I meant in baked goods in general, not in a coconut cake. I would use the coconut oil there.
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:46 PM   #7
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Thanks, butzie! I'm just sitting down to a light dinner...fresh baby greens with a bunch of "hard" veggies, appropriately mangled by the food processor, half a grilled s/b chicken breast, with a dressing of balsamic vinegar, evoo, fresh herbs and gorgonzola, and...home made whole wheat/crushed, sprouted wheatberry bread with, you got it, raw organic coconut oil instead of butter! Yum! And it's funny you should mention the lauric acid thing. I first started using coconut oil specifically for the anti-viral properties of the lauric acid. I was undergoing treatment through the VA for hepatitis C, contracted during service in Viet Nam. Turned out the stuff is delicious as well as good for you.
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Old 06-09-2008, 09:47 PM   #8
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Actually, I've recently started to see coconut butter appearing in stores around here. It's definitely different than coconut oil - marketed by the same companies as the oil in some cases. The stuff I've been seeing is meant to be used like peanut butter. I've meant to try it, but it's expensive (~$12/jar) and I can never seem to talk myself into actually paying for it.
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Old 06-09-2008, 10:41 PM   #9
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Try the raw, organic coconut oil instead. Mountain Rose Herbs (online) is my favorite source, for price, quality and service.
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:29 AM   #10
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I've been using Spectrum's organic coconut oil at home and like it. It doesn't say it's raw, which I imagine means it isn't. What is the advantage of raw?
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