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what is shortening?

(14 Posts)
FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 15:52:19

I googled it but can't find equivalents from UK supermarkets. Is it any old baking butter? It's for muffins.

Thanks.

MoreBeta Thu 22-Sep-11 15:56:28

Fat.

MoreBeta Thu 22-Sep-11 15:57:22

Usually lard.

FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 15:58:23

Argh, not sure I want that. Thanks for the quick reply, I might have to try a healthier recipe.

GrimmaTheNome Thu 22-Sep-11 16:04:49

It usually means a hard fat - Trex is (if they still make it) a vegetable alternative to lard.

For some recipes (eg shortbread) you really need a hard fat but not for muffins - I always make mine with light olive oil.

FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 16:08:58

I was thinking of replacing it with butter but it says 5 tablespoons so i suppose it could go wrong if i ignore the recipe to this extent. I should be able to find a different one. I bought a tin of pineapples and now can't find the one I wanted.

GrimmaTheNome Thu 22-Sep-11 16:31:02

It'd be fine - the only difference is they will taste much nicer with butter! Or you could use some butter, some oil.

FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 16:46:58

i'LL TRY BUTTER THen, esp if it will taste better too!

4merlyknownasSHD Thu 22-Sep-11 16:57:32

FFS (Football friend that is as I don't use intemperate language online) there is nothing unhealthy about a little bit of lard. OK, there is something unhealthy about a LOT of lard, but how many times a week are you planning to eat it? If you have a slice of bacon, that is lard no matter what you fry it in (or even if you grill it)

startail Thu 22-Sep-11 17:02:17

Fat think, I'd generally take it to mean hard fat. Cold butter, trex, lard or hard marg. The sort of fat that is easy to cut into cubes and rub into make " short crust pastry"smile

FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 21:41:25

I bought a couple of lard packs but in the end I found a recipe that used oil. It's muffins with grapefruit, carrots and raisins, from an old Annabel Karmel book. (They're quite nice but they didn't rise at all and I think they'd have been fluffier with just white flour not half-and-half with wholemeal.)

Good point about lard being inevitable in some form or other. Hmm, bacon. I do cookies once or twice a week but hadn't come across the term shortening before. I usually stick to Usborne cookery books and others for children, Delia Smith if I feel adventurous.

FootballFriendSays Thu 22-Sep-11 21:42:13

formerlySHD - I've been waiting and waiting to be called FFS. Finally!

Teapot13 Sat 24-Sep-11 13:45:07

Is it an American recipe? We use the term shortening to refer to solid vegetable fat. It's not lard. (I use Cookeen for my American recipes.) I agree butter or olive oil generally tastes better but some recipes (like certain pie crusts) turn out better with at least some shortening. It maintains its shape better than butter or oil alone.

Trippler Sat 24-Sep-11 13:57:30

I always use Trex when it says shortening. Nigella says lard is healthier than veg fat. It's not that easy to get, anyway, compared to Trex.

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