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Sunday, September 27, 2009

How To Make Infused Herbal Oils

Reposted With Thanks To: Martha


How To Make Infused Herbal Oils

..In an oil infusion the healing properties of the herbs are extracted into the oil. Dried or fresh herbs can be used...
..Oil infusions can be used for herbal rubs, massage oils, bath oils and lotions. They can form the base for ointments, salves, creams or liniments. They can also be used for salad dressings, marinades and sautéing.


The Slow Sun Method..
..The slow method is the best infusion method for the delicate fragrance of rose petals...
..Use about 50g/2 oz herbs or petals to 300ml/ ½ pint of oil...
..Fill a large jar or bottle with good quality oil such as organic cold-pressed olive oil or sunflower oil. Add the rose petals or herbs so that they are covered with oil but not tightly packed. Cover with an airtight lid and place on a warm sunny windowsill for about two weeks. Shake the jar daily. ..
..If you like this strength for culinary use, strain through muslin or a coffee filter paper and discard the herbs. Use discarded herbs for garden compost. Pour into clean jars or bottles, and add a sprig of the fresh herb for garnish and identification.
For massage or medicinal use, add fresh petals or herbs. Repeat until the oil is the required strength - about 4-5 weeks
Basil Oil..
Ingredients..

..4 tablespoons/ 1/3 cup chopped basil leaves..
..450ml/ ¾ pint/2 cups olive or sunflower oil...
..1. Remove the stalks and crush the basil in a mortar...
..2. Add a little olive oil and pound again...
..3. Mix with the rest of the oil, pour into a wide-mouthed bottle, and seal tightly...
..4. Place the jar on a sunny windowsill for 2 weeks, shaking every other day...
..5. Strain through muslin or coffee filter paper into a decorative bottle and add a couple of fresh basil leaves. Label. ..
..Use in salad dressings, pasta sauce and pizzas...
..Use this recipe for other herbs such as dill, oregano, fennel leaves, sage, marjoram, rosemary or thyme...

Aromatic Oil..

Ingredients..
..450ml/ ¾ pint organic cold-pressed olive oil..
..2 sprigs rosemary..
..6 sprigs thyme..
..1 large clove garlic..
..1 green chilli pepper..
..5-6 small red chilli peppers..
..6 black peppercorns..
..6 juniper berries
..
..1. Pour the oil into an attractive bottle with a stopper or cork...
..2. Wash the herbs and pat dry...
..3. Peel and halve the garlic...
..4. Drop all the ingredients into the bottle and seal tightly...
..5. Leave for 2 weeks. Do not strain...
..Don't be too concerned about precise measurements.
....Be loose and relaxed and remember not to pack the jars too tightly.
.... ..
..Bouquet Garni Oil..
..Ingredients..
..1 tablespoon each of sage, lemon thyme, oregano and parsley..
..1 bay leaf..
..500 ml/¾ pint/2 cups organic cold-pressed olive or sunflower oil...
..1. Chop and crush the leaves together in a mortar...
..2. Add a small amount of the oil, mix well and pound again briefly...
..3. Pour into a wide-necked jar with the rest of the oil...
..4. Cover and leave on a sunny windowsill for 2-3 weeks, shaking every other day...
..5. Strain through muslin or coffee filter paper into a bottle...
..6. Decorate by adding a sprig of each herb used...
.. ..
..Infused Spice and Seed Oils..
..Ingredients..
..2 tablespoon of seeds such as coriander, dill or fennel, or spice such as cloves or star anise...
..500ml/¾ pint/2 cups organic cold-pressed olive or sunflower oil...
..1. Crush the seeds, cloves or anise in a mortar...
..2. Mix in a little of the oil and pound again...
..3. Combine with the rest of the oil and pour into a jar...
..4. Seal and stand the jar on a sunny windowsill for 2-3 weeks, shaking every other day...
..5. Strain, pour into a bottle with a few whole seeds. Label...
..Use in salad dressings, sautéing and stir-frying...
.. ..
..The Quick Method..
..Ingredients..

..50-75 g/ 2-3 oz dried herbs such as rosemary, lavender or sage (or 75-100 g/ 3-4 oz fresh herbs)...
..300-ml/½ pint/ sunflower oil...
..1. Chop the herbs. Put half the herbs and all the oil in a container with a tight lid. (Heat resistant pyrex jars can be used if heated slowly. For larger amounts several containers can be heated together)...
..2. Put the container(s) in a pan, and fill the pan up to 2.5 cm/ 1 inch from the top of the container...
..3. Bring to the boil and simmer slowly for 2 hours...
..4. Allow to cool slightly and strain. At this strength the oil can be used for infants as a massage or bath oil...
..5. Strain, discard the used herbs and use for garden compost...
..6. Refill the container(s) with the remaining herb, cover with the strained oil, replace the lid tightly and return to the water pan. Top up the water if necessary...
..7. Simmer gently for another 2 hours. ..
..8. Cool slightly, and pour through muslin in a strainer or jelly bag, squeezing out the last drops. Any watery green liquid at the bottom of the oil must be separated and discarded, or it will spoil the oil...
..9. Pour the oil into clean bottles, and label and date them. Store in a cool, dark place and the oil will keep for a year.
..
..Try making marigold (calendula), chamomile, chickweed and plantain oils. Where possible, always use a sunny windowsill in preference to simmering the oil.
..
.. ©Martha Magenta ..
..Images from top to bottom:..
..1- Infused oils 2- Peace rose 3- Basil 4- Rosemary 5-Chilli peppers 6- Oregano 7- Star anise 8- Lavender 9- Organic cold-pressed olive oil 10- Calendula marigolds
.. Music: Celtic Journey by Einalem and Enaid
....
For a list of herb names see Botanical Herb Names

Posted by Martha

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~Nature is my Religion~  Eccentric, Atheist, Freethinker, Paganistic (minus the god/s)  Free Spirited Old Hippie-type, A Mediocre Artist & Jewelry Maker, Writer of Bad Poetry,  Lover of Whimsy, Thunderstorms, Books, cheap Red Wine & the unconventional. I  Seek a quiet life close to Nature and grow veggies and herbs, compost, day dream. 
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