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Olive Oil “Butter” and Balsamic Vinegar Gel

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This simple but delicious Olive Oil "Butter" and Balsamic Vinegar Gel recipe is from molecular gastronomy Chef Michael Elfwing of Senses at the Hilton Kuala Lumpur.

The olive oil "butter" is not only innovative but it is also much healthier than butter because it is made with just extra virgin olive oil and Glice. The olive oil "butter" is sprinkled with sea salt flakes and it is served with balsamic vinegar gel and a fresh bread roll. Alternatively, the olive oil butter can be presented in squeeze tubes for the guests to squeeze the butter themselves.

The olive oil butter actually melts a little faster than regular butter so you'll have to serve it cold right away. The consistency at different temperatures is more similar to ice cream than to regular butter.

Olive Oil Butter in Squeeze Tube

Olive Oil "Butter" and Balsamic Vinegar Gel by Chef Michael ElfwingFor this recipe you may want to use a good extra virgin olive oil with golden yellow color rather than a greenish color so it resembles the color of butter (compare the greenish olive oil "butter" from the squeeze tube with the yellow olive oil "butter" quenelle in the other picture). Olive oils made from olives picked late in the season typically are golden yellow in color due to higher levels of carotene-like substances and lower levels of chlorophyll. Olive oils made from olives harvested early in the season are usually greenish due to the higher levels of chlorophyll. Both oils may be technically equivalent in quality but very different in style.


Olive Oil Butter Ingredients

- 200 ml (6.8 oz) Chateau d’ Estublon extra virgin olive oil or a good golden yellow extra virgin olive oil

- 12 g Glycerin flakes

- Sea salt flakes

Balsamic Vinegar Gel Ingredients

- 200 ml (6.8 oz) balsamic vinegar

- 2 g Agar Agar

- Sugar syrup to taste


Olive Oil Butter

1- Place the olive oil and Glice in a sauce pot.

2- Gently warm the oil over a low heat until the Glice melts.

3- Once melted, pour into a plastic container and refrigerate for at least 12 hours.

4- Once ready to serve, warm up a spoon and turn a nice quenelle of “olive oil butter”. Alternatively fill empty tooth paste tubes with the mixture at room temperature, keep them chilled until needed and let the guests squeeze the butter themselves.

5- Sprinkle sea salt flakes.

Balsamic Vinegar Gel

1- Bring vinegar to boil and add the agar agar.

2- Simmer for 2-3 minutes and skin of any foam that rises.

3- Season to taste with sugar syrup.

4- Once ready pour into a plastic container and leave to set.

5- Once set, spoon the jelly into a blender and blend until smooth.

6- Strain the mix through a chinois and pour into squeeze bottle.

7- Keep refrigerated until needed.

Serving Suggestions

- Spread olive oil butter on toasted bread and add some slices of Prosciutto or Iberian Ham
- Spread olive oil butter on toasted bread and add some diced tomatoes

  • Pingback: Molecular Gastronomy by Chef Elfwing at Senses Kuala Lumpur | Molecular Recipes

  • Christopher Watson

    Could you use the olive oil “butter” as a healthy substitute for butter in things like fried eggs? I’m always looking for alternatives to butter, but I still use it when I must.

    • Anonymous

      Not really. In the end it is just olive oil with a consistency that resembles butter when cold.
      —– Reply message —–

    • Matthew

      You realize that you could just substitute olive oil for butter, right? When you put butter in a pan, it melts, to the consistency of … olive oil.   

  • Gretchen Torrey

    if one doesn’t have appropriate tubes, how would you best store this, for the home MG cook that is?

    • Anonymous

      Just store it in a closed container in the fridge.

  • newbie

    what is glice??????

  • David Murray

    Where do you get the squeeze tubes?

    • Anonymous

      You can use empty toothpaste tubes if you don’t need many or you can try buying them online.

  • Cikacika23

    can I substitute Glycerine flakes with liquid Glycerine?

    • QuantumChef

      I don’t think so.

  • Marsilka

    Can I substitute glycerine flakes with another ingredient that makes olive oil like a butter?

    • QuantumChef

      Don’t know about another ingredient that would be similar. sorry!

      • Marsilka

        I have found some vegan recipes for olive butter that requires refined cocoil, lecithin, xanthan gum and much more. My dream is to obtain butter from flaxseed oil, which will contain healthy ingredient that not only won’t be harmful but also boost a positive effect of flaxseed oil action.

  • EscapePod

    Can the Balsamic Gel be made ahead of time? If so, how would you store it?

    • QuantumChef

      yes, just keep it in a squeeze bottle or sealed container in the fridge.

  • Chad Kubanoff

    What does the glice do in this recipe. I thought it was used to incorporate fat into liquid, but the absence of liquid has me confused on it’s role here.

    • QuantumChef

      In this case it is just acting as a thickener. The benefit of using glycerin flakes in this recipe instead of other thickeners is that it dissolves in oil.

      • Chad Kubanoff

        Thank you QuantumChef

  • Matthew

    Why blend only one spoon the jelly?

    • QuantumChef

      Not just one spoon, all of it. Sorry for the confusion!

      • Matthew

        Why my gel have lumps of gel ,maybe i added too much agar-agar?How to remake this to smooth gel?

        • QuantumChef

          Make sure the agar is completely dissolved before removing from heat.

  • max

    why wouldn’t fluid glycerine have the same effect as the flakes? can you explain further?