Infused oils are oils that have been marinating in herbs and/or vegetables, which create amazing cooking flavors.
Oil of your choosing
Acidify the herb/garlic
Immerse raw chopped garlic (chopped into ¼ inch pieces) or stems of basil, oregano, and/or rosemary in a 3 percent solution of citric acid. Citric acid is available where canning supplies are sold.
To make the citric acid solution, stir 1 tablespoon citric acid into two cups water.
Soak 1-part peeled garlic, chopped into ¼ inch pieces to 3-parts 3% citric acid solution (⅔ cup coarsely chopped garlic cloves : to 2 cups citric acid solution).
For Fresh Herbs
Soak 1-part fresh herbs with the leaves still attached to stems to 10 parts 3% citric acid solution or (1½ cups (1.7 ounces) herbs : to 2 cups citric acid solution) for at least 24 hours before draining the acid solution away.
Keep the herbs or garlic submerged in the citric acid solution by applying a weight, placing a smaller bowl on top works well. The color of the green herb will change when it is acidified. This is normal.
Less concentrated solutions or shorter soaking times can result in an unsafe product.
You may use one type of herb or a mixture of the basil, oregano or rosemary, but you cannot mix the garlic with the herbs because the ratio of infusion differs.
Select an oil
Olive oil complements the flavor of herbs and garlic.
If you prefer the herb flavor predominate, use a milder oil such as canola oil.
Olive oil and canola oil contain fewer polyunsaturated fatty acids than many other vegetable oils and will turn rancid less quickly.
The strength of the infusion depends upon the amount of acidified herb or garlic used and the temperature of the oil. Experiment to determine the conditions that produce a result suited to your taste.
Infuse the oils at room temperature for 1 to 10 days—the intensity of the flavor increases over time.
Oil may be heated to 140°F for 5 minutes to more quickly infuse the oil. Avoid higher temperatures that could damage the flavor of the oil.
Remove the acidified garlic or herb from the oil when it has reached the desired flavor. It will not harm the product to leave the herb in the oil but may become strong.
Do not add a new sprig of fresh herb to the oil because it will not be acidified.
Protect the oil from heat and light.
While they can be safely stored at room temperature, the quality will be better for a longer period if stored in the refrigerator or freezer.
Dark-colored bottles will protect the oils from light. Make sure the bottles or jars are clean and food grade.