Monday, May 24, 2010

Garden Herb-Infused Oil

This herbed oil was initially created to marinate and store some grilled artichoke hearts. Between creating and posting I have used this oil as a base for a salad dressing, to cook eggs, add flavor and a little fat to lean burgers, grill zucchini and bake some oven sweet potato fries. The flavor is complex and full but not overpowering - perfect for any dish where a little herb goodness is needed.

Garden Herb-Infused Oil

1 bunch parsley
3/4 cup packed fresh basil
1/2 bunch fresh thyme
2 large sprigs fresh sage
2 3 inch long sprigs fresh rosemary
Zest from half an orange
Zest from one lemon
2 arbol chiles
1 1/2 teaspoon whole white peppercorns
1 small shallot
3 cups canola oil
2 cups extra virgin olive oil

Divide the herbs, zest, chile, shallot and peppercorns in half and place into 2 pint sized mason jars. Don't like sage? Add more basil or thyme. Love taragon - throw it in! Experiment with the flavors and combinations you prefer.

Pour both oils into a saucepan and heat to 200 degrees. Pour the hot oil into the jars and cover with a kitchen towel. Let stand overnight.

Pour contents through a mesh strainer or cheesecloth into a lipped bowl, remove herbs and then strain again back into the mason jars. This oil will keep up to three months in a cool dark place.

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