When summers bounty is at its peak, I seem to get the urge to create my own concoctions. Whether it be preserving my harvest a little different then last year or just trying something new for the dinner table. Flavored vinegars are always on the to-do list to add a distinctive flavor to foods from prosciutto salad to bulgar wheat.
You can buy some pretty bottles or reuse old vinegar or small neck bottles to keep you vinegars in.
Raspberry vinegar is probably one of our favorite flavors. We use it as a salad dressing when mixed with a little olive oil. It’s also very delish when used with pomegranate salad. Use either red wine vinegar or white wine vinegar for best flavor. Combine 1 1/2 pints of wine vinegar, 4 T sugar and 1 cup of raspberries. Simmer for 15 minutes. Can be reduced to intensify the flavor. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve and pour hot into a sterilized bottle.
Herb vinegars are probably the most popular. You can pick any herbs fresh from your garden. Herb vinegars release all their stored aromas. Bring 4 cups of cider vinegar to a simmer and add a handful of chosen herbs. T
urn off heat right after adding clean dry herbs and leave to cool and then strain and pour into a sterile bottle.
Have you ever thought about using lavender or nasturtiums to make flavored vinegar? Prepare the same way as making herb vinegars.
If you are looking for something special to liven up a melon and prosciutto salad, try making rose-hip vinegar. Not only is it beautiful on the counter, but it adds a great zing. Heat 4 cups of cider vinegar, and 4 T of sugar until dissolved. Allow to cool. Thread rose-hips and orange peel pieces onto a skewer alternating. Place skewer into a sterile bottle and pour in the vinegar. Cap off and let sit for at least two to three weeks for flavor to become infused.
These vinegars should be used within a year of making. Just in time for a new season and preserving!