Calendula: infusing an oil (part 2)

Making an infused oil is very easy to do. You will need the following items.

  • Herb materialcalendula-jar20jpg
  • Olive Oil (or other oil)
  • Ball Jar (2)
  • High power blender or coffee grinder
  • Funnel
  • Muslin cloth (1ft square is good)

for more accuracy in your preparation you may want

Steps to making an infused oil

  • Grind the amount of herb matter you are using in your coffee grinder or blender. The smaller the pieces the better it will infuse. (50g calendula flowers)

  • Put this into a ball jar and cover it with your oil. When using the folk method, cover your herb with oil so that all herb matter is moist and covered. For most herbs this becomes close to a 1:5 ratio (use 250ml oil or 1 cup + 2tsp. If you want a weaker infusion add more oil.

  • Cover and let this sit for 2-4 weeks (preferred method). If you are in a hurry use a water bath solution at about 110˚F. Much higher than this and the oil will burn. Doing this in a crock pot on the warm setting is the best (low will be too high). 8-36 hours will get you the results you are looking for in a crock pot.

  • After your two weeks, set up the following: a clean jar, a funnel in the top of the jar, a muslin cloth on top of the funnel. Pour your oil mixture in small amounts into the cloth on the funnel. Let it sit and allow some of the oil to go through the muslin.

  • When all of the oil has dripped through with gravity, wrap up the muslin and use your hands (or your press) to press out the remaining oil.

IMG_0826I suggest storing your oil in a dark container if it will be stored for a while. Generally olive oil goes bad in 1-2 years after first being crushed into oil. If your oil was a year old when you purchased it, it will then last for up to an additional year so the fresher is better. For more information on Olive Oil you will need to wait a few weeks for my next blog post.

Below is a list of a few herbs that infuse well in oil for medicinal uses:

  • Calendula
  • Plantain
  • Comfrey
  • St. John’s Wort (traditionally done with fresh herbs)
  • Ginger
  • Cayenne
  • Eucalyptus

Looking to make an infused oil for salad and eating? Here are great herbs you can mix together to make a great holiday gift:

  • ginger
  • garlic
  • cayenne
  • rosemary
  • sage
  • thyme

or any pre blended spice mix you have that you like as seasoning. It is nice to make a dipping oil from a pizza sauce spice blend or from your favorite ‘Mrs. Dash’ spice blend with out salt.

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