How to make coconut oil
Coconut oil making can be done with your own two hands
How to make coconut oil? It actually depends since there are mainly four types of coconut oil and they are made and produced in different ways.
Refined coconut oil or RBD coconut oil, for example, is refined, bleached, and deodorized. This oil comes from dried coconut meat (copra) and involves heating and bleaching to sanitize the oil – to remove the bad odor and dark color brought about by drying or smoking the copra.
Coconut oil consist 92% saturated fat, 6% monounsaturated fat, and 2% polyunsaturated fat. To make it purely saturated fat and leave only medium chain triglycerides in the oil, it has to undergo fractionation which is a much more mechanical method than refining. The end product of the process is fractionated coconut oil which has nearly infinite shelf life.
Hydrogenated coconut oil is made by using high amount of pressure (not heat) to create hydrogen bubbles. The method lengthens the stability of the oil, meaning, it can last longer without going rancid.
However, hydrogenation creates trans-fats that are extremely dangerous to your health, especially to your heart.
Virgin coconut oil is said to be the best type of coconut oil. It is made from natural processes without using harmful chemicals just to produce good quality of oil. Plus, it can easily be made; you can do it yourself at home!
Here is how to make coconut oil, specifically virgin coconut oil:
• Producing the Milk
a) Get a fresh and mature coconut.
b) Split the coconut shell with the use of a machete or any cleaver knife. Be very careful in doing this.
c) Once you have broken the coconut, grate the coconut meat with a grating machine or with a grating bench. Place the grated meat inside a net bag.
d) Press the bag tightly with your hands to squeeze out the milk. Produce more milk by soaking the pressed coconut meat in the coconut water and squeeze it again.
• Extracting the oil
a) Natural Fermentation
The coconut milk is mixed with the coconut water inside a transparent jar or bottle. Put it aside and let it settle at room temperature not exceeding 20 hours. This process will allow proteins (white substance), oil, and the water to separate from one another – the protein stays at the surface, the oil floats in the middle, and the water settles at the bottom.
Harvest the oil and filter it until you get pure, colorless (sometimes pale yellow) virgin coconut oil.
b) Low heating
The produced coconut milk is heated in low fire. This is for the water to evaporate and leaves only the coco oil behind.
Making coconut oil by squeezing fresh coconut meat is called cold pressed coconut oil because it is not usually extracted using high amount of heat or no heat at all.
Uses of your homemade virgin coconut oil
• For low heat cooking such as cooking pancakes and sunny-side-up.
• Our skin has natural oils called sebum that are washed off by soap during a bath. Sebum contains medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) that, when mixed with good bacteria found on the skin, can fight germs and bad bacteria. Coconut oil on skin can make a good replacement of washed oils because like the sebum, it also has MCFAs. Thus, unrefined coconut oil may be used as natural lotion or skin moisturizer.
• Makes a good dietary supplement incorporated in a coconut diet for weight loss and for health. MCFAs in coco oil are believed by nutritionists to improve metabolic performance and thyroid function.