In India, bilona Ghee has been manufactured and consumed for centuries. However, while the traditional method for producing this aromatic elixir was time-consuming and labour-intensive, the modern method is quick and mechanized. However, most of Ghee’s nutritional value is lost in the modern production process.
Then, what is the traditional method, and why are individuals returning to it? Here, you will learn more about the traditional method or the Bilona method for producing Ghee and why it is superior to the processed variety.
What exactly is Bilona Ghee?
The Bilona method derives its name from the wooden beater, or “Bilona,” which has been used since antiquity to produce butter from Curd. You may have a smaller version at home, or your grandmother may have used one to make mango shakes and lassi.
We now have the convenience of a food processor or mixer. Yes, the mixie makes lassi faster than your grandmother, but wasn’t your grandmother’s version tastier and more nutritious? Similarly, the same holds true for Ghee.
According to Ayurveda, the traditional method yields authentic desi ghee, which is far superior to conventionally process Ghee in terms of flavour, aroma, and nutritional value. Using the Vedic bilona method, Earthomaya Desi ghee is produced.
Four Steps in the Production of Bilona Ghee
Stage 1: Boiling A2 Milk
First, milk from cows is collected and then boiled. This is done because fresh, unpasteurized milk may contain impurities. The milk is then allowed to cool until it is just warm enough to produce Curd.
Stage 2: Putting Curd in milk
When milk is cooled to curd-making temperature, it is poured into earthen pots, including the malai (that is, the creamy layer). To transform the milk into Curd, a teaspoon of Curd or jamawan, a curd starter, is added. Overnight, the milk becomes curdled.
Stage 3: Churning of Curd
Here we are on the actual Bilona Stage. The Curd formed in earthen pots is poured into a larger earthen or wooden pot containing a wooden Bilona with a rope wrapped around it. The free ends of the rope are used to turn the wooden Bilona back and forth, churning the Curd clockwise and counterclockwise to create butter. The Bilona continues to produce butter from the Curd, which is separated from the buttermilk or whey.
Stage 4: Separate the Makkhan and buttermilk
In the final step, butter is transferred to a new pot and heated to produce Ghee. Since the Vedic era, wood has been used to create a fire to slowly heat the butter to separate the milk solids from the Ghee.
The Bilona method for making Ghee requires a low flame and a lengthy clarification process. The milk solids eventually turn reddish brown and settle to the bottom. Transparent bilona ghee floats above.
Notable is the fact that more cow milk is required than buffalo milk to produce the same amount of Ghee. Also, the amount required in the commercial method is nearly half what is required in the traditional method – a litre of Ghee. Despite the expense and labour involved in the Bilona method, the nutrition is maintained and lost in the commercial method.
The commercial or industrial method produces Ghee primarily from the cream of milk (Malai) or butter made from raw milk from grain-fed jersey cows or buffaloes. This is due to the continuously increasing demand for bilona Ghee. Desi cow breeds such as Gir and Sahiwal produce less milk than hybrid cows and buffaloes.
Why is the Ghee market expanding?
According to a 2015 study, approximately 30% of the milk produced in India goes into the production of Ghee. In 2020, the market value of Ghee in India was 2,374 billion rupees. In 2020, the global volume of Ghee was nearly 6,1 million tonnes.
Growing awareness of the benefits of Ghee in terms of disease immunity is driving its demand in India and around the world. Additionally, the growing population and food industry contribute to the demand for Ghee. Cow’s Ghee dominates the global bilona ghee market because it is considered the most effective Ayurvedically.
Why is Bilona Ghee so Expensive?
Do you ever wonder why the price of bilona Ghee appears high when, in reality, it is not based on its quality and health benefits? This is the reason why bilona Ghee is so expensive: 1 litre of Ghee is produced from 25 to 30 litres of A2 cow’s milk.
The market price of Ghee ranges between Rs 400 and Rs 2500 per litre. Comparing the price of 500ml Ghee for brands such as Patanjali and Amul, their Ghee costs between Rs 260 and Rs 300. The smallest available package of Nestle ghee is priced at approximately Rs. 435 per litre, making it one of the most expensive brands. Then you must be wondering why bilona Ghee is so expensive online.
The price of Bilona Ghee depends on three factors:
The kind of animal
Due to variations in fat content, milk production, and milk price. There is a difference between the price of hybrid cow or buffalo ghee and the price of Desi Cow and Gir cow ghee grade A2. Due to the increased time and effort required to collect milk for Ghee in the case of A2 cows, the price of their Ghee is higher than that of A1 cows and buffaloes.
Most brands, including Amul, do not favour Indian cow breeds due to low productivity. In addition, the Ghee sold in packets may be a mixture of cow and buffalo hybrids or even adulterated. A1 cow ghee is typically priced between Rs 500 and Rs 800 per litre, while A2 cow bilona ghee is priced between Rs 900 and Rs 4000 per litre. The price per litre of buffalo ghee is approximately Rs. 400. Even if it is adulterated, the price may be around Rs. 250 per litre.
Feed costs for the producer
Once the type of animal has been chosen, the price depends on the feed cost, that is, whether charitable goshalas are feeding the animal or the farmer has arranged to feed himself (grain or grass-fed or even left for free grazing on grass). If a farmer exerts effort, Ghee will cost him more.
The method of ghee production
Ghee is produced from raw milk cream or raw milk butter using machines or bilona. Obviously, Bilona requires manual churning, which results in more labour and higher costs. 1,000 to 1,500 rupees per litre is the price range for Desi cow ghee made from raw milk cream or butter using machines. For the bilona method, the price of desi cow ghee will likely be closer to our desi bilona ghee price of approximately Rs. 1,699 per litre. Even for buffalo or Jersey cows, the market price of bilona Ghee is between Rs. 900 and 1,200 per litre due to labour costs and effort.
The Use of Bilona Ghee in Ayurvedic Medicine
Bilona churning is a technique mentioned in our Vedas and Epics dating back three thousand years. As the Covid pandemic and fungal infections afflict the world, individuals are turning to indigenous techniques, medicines, and foods. Bilona Ghee’s advantages over regular Ghee are becoming increasingly well-known.
Benefits of Bilona Ghee to Health
Bilona Ghee contains more antioxidants and vitamins than other varieties.
Bilona Ghee contains a greater amount of nutrients than commercially produced Ghee. It contains an increased quantity of vitamins A, E, D, and K. Vitamins A and E and Butyric acid, which is also present in Ghee, are antioxidants.
Bilona Ghee is composed of essential fatty acids
The Bilona variety of Ghee retains greater amounts of Omega-3 (DHA), Omega-6 (CLA), Omega-9, and Butyric fatty acids than processed Ghee.
Bilona Ghee possesses anti-cancer qualities
Bilona ghee contains more antioxidants, such as Vitamins A, E, and Butyric acid, which combat free radicals and aid in cancer prevention.
Improve Better cognitive skills and growth
DHA or docosahexaenoic acid is essential for children’s memory and comprehension development. Therefore, bilona Ghee, particularly cow bilona ghee, is suggested for growing children.
Bilona Ghee maintains a healthy heart
Grass-fed Bilona ghee, like Earthomaya desi A2 cow ghee, contains more CLA or conjugated Linoleic Acid, which lowers bad cholesterol levels and raises good cholesterol levels. Vitamin K2 decreases the likelihood of blockages in the arteries caused by calcium deposits. Consume pure desi bilona ghee to maintain a healthy heart.
Better against inflammation
Bilona ghee contains more butyric acid, which is anti-inflammatory. Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, which are abundant in bilona Ghee, reduce inflammation.
Bilona Ghee maintains hormonal equilibrium
Bilona Ghee, which is rich in nutrients, is recommended for hormone balance. Bilona ghee effectively treats thyroid conditions and menstrual problems in women.
Bilona Ghee is beneficial for digestive health
Ghee contains Butyric Acid, which is essential for digestive health, the colon, and the intestine. Bilona ghee with a higher concentration of this short-chain fatty acid effectively prevents intestinal diseases and colon cancer. Malai-derived ghee is difficult to digest, making it unsuitable for young children. Check out our easy-on-the-stomach, preservative- and trans-fat-free Earthomaya bilona ghee products if you shop online for Desi ghee.
Recommended in diets for weight loss
The DHA and CLA in bilona ghee aid in weight loss by stimulating the metabolism and promoting fat burning.
Bilona Ghee possesses curative properties
Bilona ghee is an ayurvedic remedy for skin conditions such as inflammation, cuts, wounds, dry skin, and sunburn. It is also beneficial for curly hair problems.
Bilona Ghee cleanses the body
Because Butyrate in Bilona Ghee helps the stomach lining, it balances Vata, Pitta, and Kapha in the body and eliminates toxins.
Lactose-intolerant individuals may consume bilona Ghee.
Since milk solids have been removed, lactose-intolerant individuals may consume bilona Ghee, particularly cow ghee.
Bilona Ghee enhances vision
Bilona ghee contains more vitamin A. Ghee from Gir cows is renowned for its eye-health benefits.
Buffalo bilona ghee is ideal for people who engage in intense physical activity and those who wish to gain weight when it comes to physical activities.
Tastier and more fragrant
The Bilona variety of Ghee retains the original flavour and aroma. It is traditionally prepared and cooked over low heat. The lengthy clarification process is the reason why smearing your rotis with bilona Ghee makes them taste and smell divine and increases your appetite!
Ayurveda always recommends cooking over a low flame because high heat destroys nutrients and makes substances poisonous. Bilona ghee is produced with a low flame, so its quality is preserved and remains non-toxic.
Bilona Ghee has advantageous A2 properties
The beta-casein proteins A1 and A2 are present in milk. A2 is more prevalent in desi cow milk, and bilona ghee produced from desi cows is extremely beneficial due to its antifungal, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. A2 Ghee is effective against allergic rhinitis, bouts of sneezing, and runny nose.
Bilona ghee fortifies tooth enamel and bone
Vitamin A is essential for bone health, while vitamin D is essential for calcium and phosphorus absorption. Vitamin D also aids in the development of bones and teeth. Similarly, Vitamin K is more prevalent in bilona. Ghee aids in calcium absorption and is beneficial for bone and teeth. Knee massages using bilona ghee help knee joints.
Increased smoke point
Bilona ghee has a high smoke point and, like other oils, does not break down at higher temperatures, releasing free radicals. It is, therefore, suitable for frying, sautéing, etc.
Bilona ghee enhances immunity
This Ghee is particularly beneficial in these times of corona, back fungus, and the multitude of other diseases that have afflicted our species due to the abundance of nutrients it contains. Its Ayurvedic properties aid in disease prevention and immune system maintenance.
In this modern era, people hardly have time to make bilona Ghee at home. Many people make Ghee from malai, but it is not as beneficial as the bilona Ghee made by hand for Lord Krishna by His mother.
To experience the rich, nutty, and creamy flavour of authentic Desi Ghee, you must sample our bilona Ghee at least once.