Olive oil is a must in my pantry. I use it for so many things, such as my cooking, on top of salads and as part of a marinade. One thing I LOVE is a good, flavoured olive oil that I can use to really spice up my cooking or give my salad a bit of extra oomph!
The best thing about infused oils is they are so simple to make yourself, plus a whole lot cheaper!
What you need:
- I like to buy a good quality extra virgin olive oil, however, this isn’t necessary, any olive oil will do.
- You can purchase nice glass jars or bottles to make it in, or you can use the bottle you bought the olive oil in, as long as you can remove the drip seal, so that you are able to add your flavourings.
- You need to pick your flavours. Rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, chilli, or garlic.
- Separate your flavours into those that are dried (these are safe to add straight to your olive oil) and those containing moisture, such as fresh herbs, fresh chilli and garlic.
Dried herbs -
If you are using dried flavourings such as peppercorns, dried herbs or dried chilli, then you can simply add the desired amount to your olive oil and allow it to infuse for a few days before using. This type of infused oil will last you months and months. And doesn’t have to be stored in your fridge. In the right glass jar or bottle, these dried infused oils make a lovely homemade gift!
Fresh flavourings -
Though adding fresh chilli, fresh herbs and fresh garlic to olive oil does taste amazing (and looks fantastic in a clear glass bottle or jar), it doesn’t have the same shelf life as your dried flavours. Moisture containing foods such as garlic have a risk of containing spores of a bacteria known as botulism. Even though botulism poisoning is rare, it is still very nasty, so you don’t want to risk it! Adding fresh foods to oil is fine, as long as you keep it refrigerated and consume it within a week, otherwise, you are better off drying your produce in a dehydrator or out in the sun, before making your olive oil transfusions.