Making Fragrant Lemon Flavoured Olive Oil

CLICK ABOVE TO PLAY MUSIC

Music – “Lemon Tree (Album Version)” from Greatest Hits (US Release) by Trini Lopez. Released: 2005

In my recent quest to cook with salts from around the globe, I have also been trying a variety of olive oils, including some from Chile, Italy, Australia, France, Spain, Portugal and many other countries. Some of the differences between them are profound: some very subtle. Luckily, I have easy access to two wonderful local shops to sample the varieties: ABQ Olive Oil Company in Corrales, New Mexico (about 15 minutes from Albuquerque –http://www.abqoliveoilco.com/about.php) and Oleaceae Olive Oil in Santa Fe, New Mexico (about an hour’s drive from Albuquerque) – http://www.oleaceaeoliveoil.com. Both sell lemon scented/flavoured olive oils, but I found both rather “timid” and wanted to try making my own version. ABQ Olive Oil Co. sells it’s products online.

First of all, I zested three large (scrubbed and dried) lemons, into large peels, and placed them inside a large square of new cheesecloth.

Lemon zest/peels from 3 large lemons, in a large piece of new cheesecloth

Lemon zest/peels from 3 large lemons, in a large piece of new cheesecloth

After paring off the white pith around the lemons, I also placed them, whole, along with the zest into the cheesecloth and tied the whole thing up with kitchen string.

3 whole lemons added

3 whole lemons added

 

Place the cheesecloth bag inside a large, clean jar

Place the cheesecloth bag inside a large, clean jar

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I placed the bag inside a large, clean jar, along with two bay leaves.

Add a couple of bay leaves if desired

Add a couple of bay leaves if desired

For this exercise, I just used plain “Mediterranean Olive Oil”, from Trader Joe’s. Not high priced, nothing really special, but good olive oil, and warmed it on the stovetop until it just began to shimmer.

Then, I carefully and slowly poured the warmed olive oil into the jar until it was full and the cheesecloth with the lemons and their zest was covered.

Pour the warm olive oil over the cheesecloth bag in the jar until covered

Pour the warm olive oil over the cheesecloth bag in the jar until covered

After cooling for about an hour, I placed the lid on it and set it aside in a corner of my kitchen counter.

 

 

After 48 hours, I poured the olive oil into a tall bottle, also previously used for olive oil.

Decant the olive oil into an attractive bottle

Decant the olive oil into an attractive bottle

A quick taste proved that 48 hours was enough to lend a fragrant, lemony taste, but was not overpowering. I couldn’t discern the taste of the bay leaves at all, however.

Lemon Flavoured/Scented Olive Oil, ready for consumption

Lemon Flavoured/Scented Olive Oil, ready for consumption

Having decanted the olive oil, I was left with enough to fill another small bottle.

Remove the cheesecloth bag from the large bottle

Remove the cheesecloth bag from the large bottle

Into this bottle, I poured the leftover oil, but kept the whole lemons and juiced them into a small bowl, which I then strained and poured directly into the second bottle of lemon flavoured olive oil.

Using a lemon squeezer, extract the juice from the whole lemons

Using a lemon squeezer, extract the juice from the whole lemons

Strain the lemon juice directly into the second bottle of olive oil

Strain the lemon juice directly into the second bottle of olive oil

After settling, of course, the lemon juice remained at the bottom, but shaking it up a bit resulted in a delightful lemony olive oil dressing for salads, etc.

The lemon juice remains at the bottom, after settling, but a good shake makes for a nice lemony/olive oil dressing

The lemon juice remains at the bottom, after settling, but a good shake makes for a nice lemony/olive oil dressing

Since the lemon juice had no preservatives, however, I stored it in the refrigerator. Just a couple of minutes at room temperature is enough to make it soluble again.

I think the trick is to start with large, fresh scrubbed lemons and good olive oil. I have seen several recipes using only the zest/peel, however, I think steeping the whole lemons as well adds more depth of flavour. Enjoy!


My EatYourBooks cookbook collection

Advertisements

About vintagecookbookery

Cookbook lover and collector with a burgeoning collection of cookbooks. Reading and researching food trends, history of cooking techniques and technological advances in cooking, what we eat and why and cookbooks as reflectors of cultures is a fascination for me. As of November 7th, 2013, I hold the current Guinness World Record title for the largest collection of cookbooks: 2,970 at the official count on July 14th, 2013 (applaud now, thank you very much!) The current (unofficial) number is now 6,235. What next? More shelves?
This entry was posted in Cookbooks, Cooking, Cooking Technology, Recipes, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Making Fragrant Lemon Flavoured Olive Oil

  1. Thank you….I’m not sure if leaving the mix more than 48 hours would improve it or not. It was an arbitrary time limit, but it smelled and tasted about right to me at that time. I have the feeling that leaving it too much longer might infuse too much acidity into the oil from the lemon zest, but I’ll keep experimenting! There are plenty of lemon infused olive oils around, but after having sampled some of them, I just found them too insipid, so decided to try my own. Thanks again.

  2. My French Heaven says:

    I absolutely love this! What a delicious and creative option. I can’t wait to try this in my next tuna tartare!! Thanks for the recipe and all the info!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s