Since it’s the time of year when many bakers ponder the questions of shortening vs. butter and taste vs. texture, I figured I’d share my opinion on Nutiva, a non-hydrogenated shortening made with a blend of red palm oil and coconut oil. So far, it gets a big thumbs up!
Having tried other brands of non-hydrogenated shortening, I was skeptical about Nutiva and convinced that it would have an icky palm oil flavor. Nope. The flavor of Nutiva is surprisingly neutral. And as a bonus, the red palm oil gives it a really pretty yellow hue which has actually enhanced the appearance of a few items.
I’ve used Nutiva in pie crust, yellow cake, pound cake, crunchy chocolate chip cookies and my old favorite ginger cookies which rely on melted shortening to keep them from falling flat. Nutiva works perfectly!
And that’s all I have to say on it so far. I like it a lot and wish it were a bit less expensive so I could use it more often. Then again, butter’s is not exactly cheap these days either!
Here’s the ginger cookie recipe. I’ll post my new and improved crunchy chocolate chip cookie recipe soon, too.
- 1 cup granulated sugar (7 oz/196 grams)
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup (168 grams) Nutiva shortening**
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (9 oz/252 grams)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- Crystal sugar for garnish (optional)
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer beat shortening, sugar, egg and vanilla until light. Beat in molasses.
- In a separate bowl, mix together flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and ginger.
- Stir flour mixture into sugar mixture until thoroughly combined.
- Scoop dough and shape into 9 large mounds. Place dough mounds in refrigerator and chill for about 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment.
- Dip dough mounds in crystal sugar (if using) and arrange 5 mounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes or until cookies appear set in the middle and are starting to brown around the edges.
- Let cool for 2-3 minutes on cookie sheet. Cookies will be large, thick, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.