Olive Oil infused with Herbs
My favorite thing served in an Italian restaurant is the herb-flavored olive oil in which you can dip your bread. The taste of the garlic and herbs is wonderful! You can make a variety of herb-infused oils at home with very little effort.
Dribble a little on chicken, vegetables or fish and you will thank me later.
Best Herbs to Use
Basil - has a strong pungent, sweet smell, so it is ideal to infuse with oil
Rosemary -has a bitter, astringent taste and is highly aromatic
Oregano -from the mint family, has aromatic leaves
Sage - has aromatic grayish-green, opposite leaves. Looks beautiful in a glass bottle.
Thyme - a little-bit minty, a little-bit lemony
Processing the Oils
Bottles should be sterilized before using. (Dishwasher cycle is fine.)
Heat the olive oil on medium heat just short of boiling, about 195 degrees F, about 3 minutes. Add the herb you have decided to use until just wilted. Turn off heat and leave on burner for another minute.
Take out herb and place in bottle. Pour oil over herb then seal bottle.
Place in a cool, dark place for about 2 weeks. You can refrigerate it but it will become cloudy. This won't affect the taste. Bring to room temperature before using and the cloudiness will disappear.
You will be so glad you tried this. It is worth it!
These bottles of oil make nice gifts. Your friends will be eager to sample your oil. A recipe card could be attached with a ribbon.
These gifts are very personal, from your own kitchen. So enjoy making your specialty.
Try this recipe with your herb-infused oil.
1/3 cup olive oil infused with basil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
sweetener equal to 1-2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon brown mustard
1 teaspoon minced garlic
20 grinds black pepper
Combine and shake well. Serve immediately. Will keep in refrigerator for about 3 days.
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