Aromatics – herbs, citrus, garlic, chili peppers and spices – are all delicious infused in olive oil, vinegar, simple syrup or heavy cream. Once infused oils and vinegars are made, they will keep in the refrigerator for up to a month. Take them out about twenty minutes before you use them to bring them up to room temperature. Depending on the flavor, they can flatter salads, pasta, seafood, potatoes or bread. Simple syrups can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a month or frozen for longer storage. Infused cream keeps for up to 3 days in the refrigerator and whipped just before serving.
Infused oils and vinegars are a marriage of warmed up oil (I prefer olive oil) or vinegar and aromatics. Herbs should be washed then dried thoroughly. Let cool and steep until the desired flavor is achieved. It’s that straightforward and simple.
Simple syrup is simply equal parts sugar and water brought to a boil to melt the sugar. It’s used to sweeten iced tea, lemonade and specialty cocktails.
Heavy cream can be heated with herbs or citrus, then cooled overnight before whipping. It can either be sweetened with sugar or made savory and seasoned with salt as a garnish for salads.