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Tuesday, April 19, 2016


Beginning to end herb infused cooking oil cubes. I'm using up last years garlic from my home garden only after making sure that garlic was planted in the garden for this year.
Garlic and Chive 
I started to work early Monday so that I could take a longer lunch. I still had garlic, red and white onions and potatoes to plant. I didn't have enough time to plant the potatoes. 
I had two kinds of garlic.  There was a generic garlic that you buy in any box store and some garlic that was purchased from Gurney's. These were some that I set aside from last year to plant this spring. 
Garlic Clove
When you plant garlic, you break off a clove. One garlic plant will produce as many plants as cloves in the bulb.
Planted Garlic
I planted  the cloves about 3 inches apart. I have 2 rows planted.  It was important for me to keep each type separate. I like to grow my own herbs for cooking.  Then there is no doubt about the freshness.
Ready for processing
Inside, I got everything ready for making garlic infused oil. 
Ice cube tray
 chives or any other herbs
extra virgin olive oil 
coconut oil
Begin by cutting the dry tip off from the end. It's okay to leave the naturally protective paper on it. That will pop off in the next step.
Clip the end off from the clove
Use the flat side of your blade to smash and flatten the clove.  This will release the paper covering and brings out the flavor of the garlic. 
Flatten the clove of garlic
Doesn't that work slick? One good slap and the garlic is flat with the paper covering sliding right off.
Remove paper-like covering
When you have several cloves ready, you can begin chopping them. You can do one whole garlic bulb at a time. Or do it in smaller groups.
Chop garlic
I put the chopped herbs into each of the individual ice cube trays. I left them loose so that the oil could soak in between. I started out with extra virgin olive oil. I recommend using a small container because it's easier to pour at the slower speed you need.
Fill ice cube tray with herbs then oils
Coconut oil needs to be melted before you can work with it. I put mine in the microwave about 20 seconds. Then I used a spoon to control the poor into the cups.
Coconut Oil
This ice cube fits a tablespoon of herbs and oil.  It is nice to use a known size cube so that you can control the amount of fat that you are adding as you sauté. 
Varieties are no problem
The chives were growing well in the garden so I cut them and brought some in to demonstrate. Chives are like a mild onion taste.
Springtime Chives
I rinsed the chives before I even set them down. I've seen people pick them in the garden and chew on them on the way to the house.  That is just a little too much onion for me.
Then I chopped them into small pieces. Normally when I work with chives, I cut bigger pieces. But for this project they need to be tiny.
Drooling yet?  Cut chives
With 21 cubes to fill, they can all be the same, all be different or anywhere in between.  Normally I do one tray of one kind because it is easiest for preparation.  But to show you some variety, I mixed it up a bit. 
Ending the tray with chives
With everything ready, the cubes went into the freezer for 24 hours.  Just a warning, when they come out of the freezer you will need to move quickly.  The oils will begin to soften quickly at room temperature.  This tray that I purchased has a special pop out design.  Even with that, I had problems with some of the cubes coming out.
Ready for the freezer

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