Spring is a great time for making some flavoured vinegars for Summer Salads and vegetables. It also makes great presents for Xmas! The flavoured vinegars are easy to make and can be left to infuse the flavours for as little as 2 weeks.
We show you a general method, and then several specific flavoured vinegars. If you are growing your own fruits and herbs, this is an excellent way to use your crops. Don’t forget to sterilise all of your equipment and utensils.
General Method for Flavoured Vinegars
Select thick bottles or jars and sterilise by immersing in boiling water for 5 minutes.
Wash any herbs well and choose undamaged fruit.
Bring the best red or white vinegar to boiling and simmer for 1 minute. Pack the herbs or fruit into bottles or jars and pour over the hot vinegar using a sterilised funnel. Cover and leave until cold and then seal. Stand for 2 – 6 weeks, shaking occasionally.
The vinegar can be strained before use – in this case make the vinegar in large jars, strain through muslin after standing and place the vinegar into attractive bottles with airtight lids.
Tarragon, rosemary, basil; raspberries, strawberries and pears make great vinegars. Some gentle vegetables can be used, e.g. asparagus.
Use the General Method above with 1 punnet raspberries and 4 cups white wine vinegar.
Great with tomato salads and avocados.
Alternative Raspberry Vinegar
2 cups castor sugar
2 cups good quality white or red vinegar
Lightly crush the berries and sprinkle with a little of the sugar. Stand for 12 hours, then strain the juice through a fine sieve or muslin into a heat proof sterilised preserving jar. Add the sugar and vinegar. Stand the jar in a pan with water that comes 2/3 way up the sides of the jar. Stir the vinegar with a clean metal spoon until the sugar is dissolved and the water comes to a boil. Maintain 1 hour. Strain through fine muslin and store in sterilised bottles. Best stored in the fridge.
Use 4 cups white wine vinegar, 3 Tblspn castor sugar, 1 tspn whole cloves, 1 cinnamon stick, 3 thinly sliced oranges.
Simmer the vinegar with sugar and spices for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the oranges. Cover and cool and place in sterilised jars. Continue as with the General Method above.
Use the General Method above with 2 punnets strawberries, sliced, and 4 cups white wine vinegar.
Great with fresh salad greens, avocados, and bocconcini dusted with black pepper.
Use the General Method above with 1 cup fresh herbs and 4 cups white wine vinegar. 4 garlic cloves can be added.
Great with crisp carrots, fennel, green peppers, marinades, sauces, purees.
Use the General Method above with 1 cup tarragon, 3 bay leaves and 4 cups white wine vinegar.
Great with crispy salads, broccoli, cabbage, spinach, silver beet, warm beetroot.
Use the General Method above with 90g red or green chillies and 4 cups white wine vinegar.
Great with salad dressings.
Use the General Method above with 90g rosemary, 1 Tblspn black peppercorns, and 4 cups white wine vinegar.
Great with baked dishes.