Infused Oils

This is a somewhat slow but natural process—with tasty and delectable results. First, fill up a canning jar with herbs that you have gathered or bought. If you are wildcrafting, make sure you give your herbs a day to dry out in the sun (in a brown paper bag)—the water from fresh herbs can make the oil go rancid. If buying them, get the dried stuff. Next, fill the herb-packed jar with oil (extra-virgin olive oil, grapeseed, and sunflower are good). Don’t leave room for air, as this may spoil the infusion. Cap the jar and put it on a sunny windowsill for 3-12 weeks, agitate daily if possible. When ready, strain through cheesecloth and Voila! Infused oil can be used for:

-Massage oil (as is or cut with more oil)

-Salve (melt 1 part wax to 3 parts infused oil over a double boiler—right before pouring, add a few drops of a complimentary essential oil, pout into a container and you have a simple, all-purpose salve!)

-Cut half the infused oil and replace with coconut oil to turn salve into lip balm..

-Delicious infused cooking oil—for this you do not want to initially fill the jar with herbs just put in a handful or so—you don’t want the flavor to be overwhelming.

Some good herbal combinations are:

-Lavender, rosemary, sage, and mint are all excellent for massage oils and salves. You can often find them growing wild or in yards.

-Rosemary and sage also make good cooking oils.

-For a clarifying salve/oil, try mint, lemon verbena, and clary sage.

-For a relaxing salve/oil, try chamomile, lavender, and maybe rose petals.