Today I am sharing this easy recipe for Herb infused Olive Oil.
I remember a few years back I went to this restaurant in Delhi. I can not recollect the name of the place (I am growing old), but what I remember is the big basket of assorted bread and the bottle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar that they kept before our meal was served. That moment is when my love affair with dipping bread in olive oil started.
When I was in the US, the days when I wanted a quick snack, I would take a nice crusty loaf of bread and serve it with some herb oil. This herb oil recipe that I first used to make focaccia has been a favorite in my kitchen. Its a great way to use up all the fresh herbs that are growing in the garden or when you have extra from the store after using it in a particular recipe, which I always did.
Don’t have fresh herbs? You can use dried and still get great results.
Use this herb oil recipe to make focaccia; or as a dipping oil for your baguette. The herb infused olive oil also does well as a salad dressing or you can use it to drizzle over your pasta. Looking for favor ideas for your wedding? Herb infused olive oil bottles are an elegant gift to give your guests.
Since there are not too many ingredients- make sure you use the best. You want the herb flavor to be more pronounced, so there is no need to use extra virgin olive oil. Make sure to wash all the herbs going into your oil and let them dry as much as possible, preferably overnight. This will decrease the risk of bacteria growth.
There are two ways to go about infusing the olive oil. You could go the slow way and cover all your herbs with olive oil in a sealed bottle and let sit in a dark place for 1-2 weeks. Or you could heat your olive oil to 100 F and then add all your ingredients to let infuse. This makes the oil infuse more quickly and you can enjoy the benefits of this simple yet flavorful recipe.
This recipe is adapted from the gorgeous Bread Baker’s Apprentice cookbook by Peter Reinhart .
- 2 cups olive oil
- 1 cup chopped fresh herbs (any combination of basil, parsley, oregano, tarragon, rosemary, thyme, cilantro, savory, and sage) - OR - ⅓ cup dried herbs or a blend such as herbes de Provence
- 1 tablespoon coarse (kosher) salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper or red chilli flakes
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic or 5 to 6 fresh cloves, minced
- Warm 2 cups of olive oil to about 100 degrees F. Add 1 cup of chopped fresh herbs or ⅓ cup dried herbs. Add the salt, pepper, and garlic. Stir together and allow to steep for a day. You can keep any leftover herb oil in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.