don’t think God rested on the 7th day. It’s my guess that he (or she) was too stuffed on crusty bread soaked in the holiest of Olio Santo’s and simply too full to get off the couch and create some more mountains, animals, universes, and so on. This is merely an assumption, of course, but once you try this Olio Santo for yourself you too might find your ass plastered to a chair after hours of sinful gluttony.
Olio Santo (or Holy Oil) is nothing more than spicy olive oil but has the ability to elevate a slice of bread, bowl of soup, plate of pasta, or garden salad into something…spiritual. Some recipes call for fresh and dry chiles together, others only fresh, others only dry. My preferance: whatever you have. I just so happen to have a few dozen dried Tabasco chiles hanging in my kitchen from last years harvest and decided it was time I used them for more than decoration. They are indeed the same chiles used for the famous hot sauce, but when dried their flavor is much more complex and aromatic. Perfect for making Olio Santo. Let there be heat:
1 Cups Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Whole Dried Chiles
Start first by snapping off the green bits of your chiles, the stems, we don’t want those. Place all of your chiles into a mortar and start beating aggressively like they called your mom fat or something. Once crushed to itsy bitsy pieces, add to a small sauce pan with the olive oil.
Bring your oil up to 110-125 degrees F and allow to “steep” for 30 minutes or until the oil becomes very fragrant and turns an orangey-red hue. Strain into the jar or bottle of your choice and allow to cool before capping. The oil can be used right away but is best after a week or more in a dark pantry where the flavors can get to know one another….call it the immaculate conception step.
Again, this saintly oil is good on just about anything you can think of from scrambled eggs to pizza to stir fries and grilled fish. Best of all, tho, is merely dragging a warm slice of semolina bread thru this heavenly anointment. The body of this loaf compels you!