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Thursday, 09 April 2020
Sesame oil
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Sesame oil is obtained from the ripe seed of Sesamum indicum L. by pressing (cold-pressed sesame oil). However, as a rule, sesame oil is obtained by extraction from the ripe seed of Sesamum indicum L., the resultant product subsequently undergoing a refining process (refined sesame oil).

Sesame is believed to be the oldest oil plant, with evidence that is was used by the Persians as far back as 2100 B.C., although it is widely assumed that it was being produced as far back as 4000 B.C. The plant is native to countries bordering the Indian Ocean, East Africa and India. From the very early days, sesame was a key plant in economic and cultural terms. King Sargon II used sesame seeds to pay wages. The proverb "Open, sesame!" was used to get the pod to open up, in order to release the seed. Nowadays, sesame is cultivated primarily in India, China, Sudan, Egypt, the former Soviet Union and Mexico. During the growth period, this plant, which grows to a height of between approx. 60 cm and 1.2 m, requires temperatures of 20-24° C, dry ripening conditions and a frost-free period of at least 5 months, conditions that expose sesame to multiple risks.

The sesame seed is one of the fat-rich oil-yielding plants, with a 45-63% oil content. The crude oil is first pulverised, flaked and conditioned before being pressed or (solvent) extracted and it is then refined. The clear, golden yellow, non-drying cold-pressed oil gives off a nutty smell, whilst the refined product is a clear, light yellow, virtually odourless liquid. Both grades set to a buttery mass at a temperature of approx. -4° C. The oil, over 3/4 of which consists of unsaturated essential fatty acids (oleic and linoleic acids, in almost equal proportions) is a high-value edible oil in terms of nutritional physiology. Thanks to the antioxidant content, compared with other vegetable oils, this product has a fairly lengthy shelf-life.

In Europe, sesame oil is used mainly in the baking trade and for margarine production. Sesame oil is also used in the pharmaceuticals trade as an excipient for the delivery of drugs.

INCI Name: Sesamum Indicum Seed Oil


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