Herb-Infused Olive Oil

The flavors found in herbs and garlic are soluble in oil.  Heat speeds up the process, although this can also be done cold.

Prep time:  10 minutes
Cook time:  5 minutes
Yield:  2 cups infused oil

2 cups olive oil
1 bunch fresh thyme, washed and dried
5-8 leaves fresh sage, washed and dried
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, washed and dried
3 garlic scapes, chopped (or 2 cloves garlic, chopped)
1 teaspoon peppercorns

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until a pinch of the herbs gently bubble when added.  Add te thyme, sage, rosemary, garlic, and peppercorns and simmer gently for 4-5 minutes or until a taste with a spoon (blow on it to cool it!) achieves the flavor intensity you like.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Pour oil into a jar with a lid.  Infused olive oil will keep on your counter for a week or more, longer in the fridge although you’ll need to warm it up to pour properly.

Use infused oil for dressing pasta and pizza, and for dipping bread.

Variations:  Try a wide range of your favorite herbs.  Other mild cooking oils can also be used, such as canola or safflower.  Strongly flavored oils (peanut, sesame) present more of a challenge:  your herb flavors might get lost, or conflict with the herbs.

Photo and recipe by Tod Dimmick

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