Bran new benefits

An oil with promising qualities

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The pale gold oil made from the bran and germ of rice has a higher smoke point than most other vegetable oils, so it doesn't scorch as fast in cooking. Its health-promoting properties are impressive as well, from poly- and monounsaturated fatty acids to antioxidants.

A familiar ingredient in Asia, the mellow-tasting rice bran oil is now bottled here by the California Rice Oil Company. It's available in many supermarkets and natural-food stores for about $7 (16.9 oz.). (415) 382-0373.

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