Margarine is vegetable fat that is processed into a spread that can be used in just about every recipe or application that calls for butter. Whether formed into sticks or processed into a soft spread that can be taken from the refrigerator to the table, margarine is available in a number of supermarkets, and is often priced at a very affordable rate. More recently, margarine sprays have become an important part of the food landscape in many nations around the world. Generally, margarine is produced with a combination of different types of vegetable oils. Some brands tend to use soybean oil, whiles other favor corn oil. As part of the preparation process, the oil undergoes hydrogenation. The addition of more molecules of hydrogen to the mixture helps to achieve the solid texture required if margarine is to resemble the look and texture of a butter spread. Generally more easily spread than many forms of butter, margarine was first touted to be a healthy alternative to the higher content of fat found in fresh butter. Margarines have changed these days, due to the consumer demands and recommendations from health professional organizations. Regular margarine products are higher in oil and are commonly used for baking and cooking. Reduced-fat, low-fat and fat-free products are most often used for spreading and topping. Margarine products are now available in sticks, tubs, and squeeze and spray forms to serve various purposes.
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