DIY Herb Infused Olive Oils
As mentioned in an earlier article that I wrote on DIY Lavender Eucalyptus Bath Salts, I made mention that I also made herb infused olive oils for my husband for his Christmas present.
To buy these oils in a specialty store can be very expensive. To make the oil yourself is very cost effective and the end result is beautiful and very delicious.
There are several different recipes and it is a personal preference for each individual.
I chose to make my husband a rosemary, sage and thyme infused olive oil as it is one that tastes great tossed with pasta, orzo and is great with chicken as well. I love it mixed in a great big garden salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, strawberries, feta cheese and mixed greens including spinach and romaine lettuce. I love it with a big chunk of specialty baked artisan bread that I dip into the olive oil. It is simply yummy.
To be cautious, I dried out my fresh herbs on low heat in the oven to get the moisture out as you can contaminate and get bacteria into the finished product if the herbs aren’t washed or dried properly. Bacteria can’t grow in the olive oil itself, but it can grow in the water left on the ingredients going into the oil. Botulism is a concern when making any kind of infused olive oil, especially when using garlic.
– 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
– 1 bunch mixed herbs that you slightly bruise to release their oils for more flavor (I chose rosemary, sage and thyme)
1. Wash and fully dry the fresh herbs. I baked mine on low in oven to take out excess moisture.
2. Put herbs into decorative tall glass bottles with cork lid or rubber stopper(you can purchase these at your local dollar store) Also, a glass vinegar bottle with a stopper works well. I put all three herbs into each bottles (rosemary, sage, thyme). Make sure to wash and dry your bottle thoroughly.
3. Warm olive oil on stove in small saucepan over low heat for approximately 20 minutes. You just want the oil to warm, not cook or spatter. Pour over herbs that are in decorative tall glass bottles. Cover the ingredients with olive oil, seal the bottle, and let it sit in a cool, dark cupboard for up to two weeks before using it. The oil will slowly infuse over this time. Do a taste test every so often so see how it’s coming along. Strain out the solids and re-bottle the oil once the flavor is to your liking.
Another method which works is to heat the oil and ingredients in a saucepan on medium-low heat. Let the oil cool down then strain out the herbs before bottling the infused oil. The oil infuses quicker with this method and can reduce the risk of bacteria growth, but it can also affect the flavor and quality of the olive oil.
Infused olive oil will generally keep for up to one month, especially if kept refrigerated. If the ingredients in the olive oil start to show any signs of spoilage, discard the rest of the oil immediately.
This olive oil makes a great house-warming present as well as any other occasion. Your family and friends will be delighted to receive and share this gift.
There are many combinations you can make for your olive oil. It is a personal preference, so have fun making this simple, delicious gift.