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How to Make Herbed Vinegars

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Herb Combinations for Vinegars

How to Make Herbed Oils & Butters

Herb Combinations for Oils & Butters


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Stonewall Kitchen, LLC

 

Stonewall Kitchen, LLC

Herbal vinegars are easy to make, are wonderful additions to the chef's kitchen, and make elegant yet inexpensive gifts for just about any occasion.  You can buy inexpensive decorative bottles, employ used wine bottles, or utilize unusual flea market finds and fill them with all sorts of exotic combinations that look fabulous displayed on a shelf, and that make wonderful additions to foods and marinades. 

Please find instructions below on how to make Herbal Vinegars, and what herbs go best with what types of Vinegars.  Also be sure to check the link at the top left  for a list of herbal combinations to try at home.   

Herbed Vinegars

Herbed vinegars can be used in any recipe that calls for vinegar.  Choose the type of vinegar by the herbs you are using.  Red and White Wine Vinegars and Rice Vinegars are the most often used, because of their smooth taste.  White Vinegar is sharper, but is still a nice choice with some herbs.  Cider Vinegar has a taste of it's own, so care has to be taken so that it doesn't overpower the herbs.  Again, I have compiled a nice list of herb combinations for making herbed vinegars in these pages, so feel free to check it out for ideas about herbal combinations and what kinds of vinegars to use.  This list only a general guideline for beginners, but do experiment with combinations of your favorite herbs on your own. 

In herbed vinegars, the proportion of herb to vinegar is an important consideration as far as taste, and if you have a favorite herb, please adjust the herb proportions accordingly.  One thing about making herbed vinegars is that if you make a mistake and the taste is wrong, you haven't spent much money, and you still have a decorative addition for the kitchen.  As a baseline for proportioning the herbs, use three or four 2 inch sprigs of fresh herb per cup of vinegar.  If using dried herbs, use 1/4 cup of herb per cup of vinegar.  If using garlic, hot peppers, or something similar, use 1 garlic clove or 1 pepper per cup of vinegar. 

Place the herbs in clean jars or decorative bottles.  Gently heat the vinegar, but don't boil it.  Let it cool down, then pour the warm Vinegar over the herbs in the jars.  Place the jars in a dark place, such as a cabinet or shelf away from bright windows. The vinegars can be used in 3-4 weeks to up to a year later. 

If you prefer to start out simply, you can make single-herb vinegars - below is a sampling of some herbs and the appropriate types of vinegar to try.  This is not a complete list by any stretch, so do experiment on your own once you are comfortable with the basics.

White Wine Vinegar goes well with Borage, Chive, Dill, Savory, Sage, Opal Basil, Lavender Sprigs or Flowers, Fennel, Parsley, Rosemary, Tarragon, Thyme, Garlic and Onion Stems & Blossoms

Red Wine Vinegar goes well with Basil, Garlic, Oregano, and Thyme.

White Vinegar is complimented by Basil, Rosemary, Tarragon, and Dill.

Cider Vinegar is enhanced by Lovage, Orange Peel Spirals, Raspberries, and Lavender Blossoms.

Rice Vinegar goes well with Parsley, Dill, Savory, Sage, Rosemary, Purple Basil, Tarragon, Thyme, and Garlic.

Use these single combinations, or experiment with your own for poultry or seafood marinades, to sprinkle over tomatoes or cucumber dishes, in green salads, mixed with mayonnaise, in bean salads, soups, stews, fish sauces, and for potato salads.

 

 

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