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Old 02-11-2008, 09:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JillBurgh View Post
As far as the botulism issue, we made a slew of homemade oils from garden herbs at the end of the season. I noticed that if any of the herbs/peppers were peeking out from the top of the oil, it got moldy quickly. I assumed though that if the organics were fully submerged in the oil, we were safe. I've been using the oil all winter. Are we in danger?
Yes, you are. Botulism spores thrive in an anaerobic (airless) environment - oil is perfect for that. We had a long thread with links on this about a year ago: http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...oil-32153.html

This is from a university newsletter: The Green Line

Another university fact sheet: Botulism: What you don't see can hurt you, HYG-5567-98

HTH.
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Old 02-11-2008, 10:10 AM   #12
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Hello Gillburg

I usually store mine in olive oil and leave them in the fridge.
I think the botullism only applies to uncooked things. If u roast the peppers it would kill the bacteria, wouldnt it.

Mel
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:15 PM   #13
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I could be wrong, but I don't think ordinary cooking kills all types of botulism.

And yes JillBurgh, you are DEFINITELY in danger of botulism poisoning using those oils. Homemade herb oils have been seriously out of fashion & into the danger zone for many years now. Unless you plan to use them up within a few days, don't bother. In fact, I just for the heck of it quickly looked up botulism online, & the few sites I visited all said that "garlic, herbs, & chili peppers in oil are one of the most common methods of contracting botulism poisoning, along with improper home canning".

I think I'll just continue the way I've been. If I can't use the roasted peppers in a few days - out they go.
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:25 PM   #14
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Yikes! Thanks for all of the info. I have forwarded all of those links to the man of the house. He is hard to convince of things like that... Like if it smells okay, it IS okay in his opinion. Good thing he won't have a say in me throwing it all away when I get home!
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:26 PM   #15
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Ugh, another bacteria hi-jack.

I used to roast my own bell peppers. Either in the oven, on a burner or on the grill. Unless the recipe does not call for olive oil, I use the jarred roasted peppers. It takes 20-25 minutes off the prep time using those. I always keep a large jar in the pantry for sauces or sandwiches or whatever.

However, a grill full of green, red, yellow and orange bell peppers is heaven.
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Old 02-11-2008, 05:05 PM   #16
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Well - better a bacteria hi-jack than a hospitalized or deceased poster!! ;)
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Old 02-12-2008, 02:35 AM   #17
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Infused oils were never something we considered making and using. I have thought of canning as we used to do it when I was a kid and we do often have a surplus of tomatoes each year, but in the end figured I was safer just sharing the harvest with neighbors. My luck I would get something wrong and we would all end up sick :(
But now I am re-considering as this year, if all goes well, I will have a surplus of not only tomatoes but horseradish and peppers.
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Old 02-12-2008, 09:18 AM   #18
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I tried to make an infused oil about 14 years ago when we first bought our house and started an herb garden. I put a few sprigs of rosemary in a bottle of olive oil and put it in a sunny window, thinking the heat would help the flavor infuse into the oil.

After a couple of days, I noticed some tiny threads apparently growing off the rosemary leaves. I pointed this out to DH, who was a science teacher at the time, and he advised throwing it away. Sure am glad I did - botulism poisoning in the making there.
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Old 02-12-2008, 12:04 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
I tried to make an infused oil about 14 years ago when we first bought our house and started an herb garden. I put a few sprigs of rosemary in a bottle of olive oil and put it in a sunny window, thinking the heat would help the flavor infuse into the oil.
That's exactly what we did with our oils, the sunny windowsill thing.

When I got home from work yesterday DH had already tossed all of the bottles of infused oil ahead of me, knowing I'd be in a frenzy. I told him how I told everyone here that he wouldn't care one way or the other if it was poisoned and he laughed and replied, "I was thinking, this stuff smells pretty good while I poured it down the drain."

Groan...
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