Herbal vinegars are one of the simplest concoctions to whip up and yet they lend a complex undertone to so many delicious dishes. Don't confine your vinegar use to just salad dressing. Herbal vinegars will dress up spreads, like mayonnaise, sauces and all types of appetizers.
While you're concocting your creations, make some extras to give as gifts for any occasion. Because of vinegars acidity, herbal vinegars last for several months. Of course if you make them well, they don't last long at all.
- Rinse and thoroughly dry your choice of fresh herbs or edible flowers.
- Sterilize your bottles or jars and let them dry thoroughly.
- Slightly bruise the herbs and stuff them into the bottles. Fill the jar about 1/3 full with herbs and flowers. Shake the bottle as you insert the herbs, to distribute them.
- Bring the vinegar to a boil and carefully pour into the bottles and over the herbs. Fill to within 1/2 inch of the top of the bottle or jar.
- Allow to cool and seal the bottles.
- Refrigerate and allow to steep for 1 - 2 weeks.
- Herbs and flowers can then be strained out, to prolong the life of your vinegar.
- Keep refrigerated.
- Choose colorful herbs and flowers, to tint the color of your vinegar.
- Good choices for herbal oil infusions include: basil, borage, calendula, dried chilies, cilantro, dill, nasturtium, rosemary, sage, savory, tarragon, and thyme.
- Fruits, spices, garlic and peppercorns also work well.
- Many gift recipients won't want to use something so beautiful. Remind them the vinegar won't keep and promise to make more next year. If you give the vinegar as a gift while it's steeping, label with a "Ready to Use" date.
- Wrap simply with a ribbon and a label or cover the top with a decorative fabric for a country-look. Include favorite recipes when giving as a gift.
What You Need
- Sterilized jars or Bottles
- Lids or Corks
- White Wine Vinegar or White Rice Vinegar
- Herbs, Edible Flowers, Chile Peppers