If you like to use flavoured oils, then by far the best ones are those you make yourself. The real thing rewards with a clean, vibrant, infusion of genuine, unadulterated flavour. I find them very easy and satisfying to prepare. Make just the amount you need as it’s recommended you use them within a day or two. You will find there’s no comparison with shop-bought infused oils - and you won’t be left with a bottle of oil oxidizing in your store cupboard.
I use Skye Gyngell’s* method for chilli oil as it gives a gentle kick rather than a knock-your-head-off effect. And just because you’re making a flavoured oil, don’t skimp on the quality of the oil you use. The better the extra virgin olive oil, the better the end result. If I don’t need the amount in the recipe, I make a smaller amount with half the quantities. Dee Nolan
Skye Gyngell’s chilli oil
Halve 4 large red chillies lengthways and remove the seeds. Slice them lengthways into very fine strips, then cut across into tiny squares (almost mincing the chillies). Place in a bowl, add a pinch of sea salt and pour over 200ml of extra virgin olive oil. Use within 1 or 2 days.
*from A Year In My Kitchen by Skye Gyngell, published by Quadrille