Infused olive oil can can add an interesting dimension to many dishes; it can be drizzled over roasted vegetables, grilled or seared meat, fish, poultry or included in vinaigrettes, dressings and sauces.
Every summer when the herb garden is thick with basil I can't seem to get enough of it! I make a fair share of pesto, and also use those fragrant emerald leaves in sandwiches, salads and with chicken and fish ~
I learned this simple technique for infusing olive oil with herbs from chef Michael Chiarello. The method can be used for making many kinds of infused oils whether the ingredient is basil, rosemary, oregano, garlic, chiles, chervil, chives, cilantro, mint, mushrooms or citrus fruit. (Tarragon works best in early spring, otherwise it is quite bitter when infused.)
By following a few common sense tips you can safely* and easily make your own.
I adore the flavor and color it adds to the plate! With this simple processing method the oil must be used within a couple of days, so I make a very small amount; usually about 1/2 cup.
For greater control in application you can put it in plastic squirt bottles, but I usually just store it in these tiny bottles given to me in a surprise box by a special friend , after I admired some that she had. Thank you special friend! You know I think of you often. :)
* Important notes:
It must be kept under refrigeration and used within 5 days, so I make it in small quanities (about 1/2 cup at a time.)
Unlike flavored vinegars, it is important that no fresh herbs or other ingredients are added back into the oil before storage because this could introduce the risk of the food borne illness, botulism.
If you would like a printable copy of the method for making infused olive oils you can find it on my recipe blog by clicking HERE.
Thank you for stopping by ~ have a healthy and delicious day!