Did you know that you can make your own creations of Infused Balsamic Vinegar, and use it in culinary recipes as the base for a salad dressing, to marinate meat, poultry or fish; or toss it in with your favorite pasta salad?
Additionally, you can use Infused Balsamic Vinegar as a cleaning and laundry aid. There are also a handful of beneficial properties to using vinegar in herbal remedies and in the bath.
Types of Vinegars
Distilled White Vinegar is clear in color with a sharp acidic taste. It is a good choice for delicately flavored herbs and is the best choice for cleaning. It is the least expensive of the group.
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is milder in taste than distilled white vinegar. The darker color may not be as desirable for light colored fruits, vegetables, and herbs. It tends to blend well with dark berries.
There are a handful of Wine Vinegar flavors to select from. They are more expensive than distilled and cider vinegar but they offer a wider range of flavor. Our Balsamic Vinegar experts suggest Red, White, and Champagne when creating your Infused Balsamic Vinegar for culinary uses, they can make very smooth flavored products.
Rice Vinegar is slightly sweet with a mild flavor. It generally contains proteins that may promote bacterial growth if the vinegar is not handled and stored properly. For added safety, our Infused Balsamic Vinegar experts recommend that you use only commercially produced vinegar and make sure you sterilize your containers and utensils.
Balsamic Vinegar is the most expensive, but also the most notable. It is made from unfiltered and unfermented grape juice. The older the Balsamic Vinegar, usually the sweeter and syrupy it becomes.
Some of the plants and vegetables you may want to try include the following.
- Citrus Peels
- Lemon balm
The large plant matter can be threaded onto a bamboo skewer and inserted in the Balsamic Vinegar jar. This way they can seamlessly be removed when the desired flavor is reached.
To help evenly distribute more flavor, slit the peppers, peel garlic, and slice onions before adding them to the Balsamic Vinegar.
How to Infuse Balsamic Vinegar
You can assist in sterilize your jars by dipping them in boiling water or run them through a dishwasher cycle. Small neck jars will most likely need to be dipped.
Make sure to wash the herbs and vegetables and thoroughly dry them with a clean towel.
Infusing Balsamic Vinegar Without Heat
Put your cleaned herbs, vegetables, or fruit into the sterilized glass jar and then fill the jar with the vinegar of your choice.
Next, let the vinegar condition in a cool dark place for 3-4 weeks to develop flavor.
After that is complete, strain the vinegar through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth so that it catches any sediment. Discard the herbs and store the flavor infused vinegar in your sterilized bottle.
Hard stemmed herbs like rosemary, lemon balm, and peppermint, or vegetables such as garlic and ginger, are able to hold up when submerged in vinegar for long periods of time. Delicate fruits are best strained.
Infusing Balsamic Vinegar With Heat
Some people prefer to heat the vinegar to 190-195ºF, and then pour the hot vinegar over the herbs. Heating the vinegar ahead of time may speed the process for a finished product.
Others prefer to add the vinegar and herbs / fruit/ vegetables to a small, stainless steel saucepan and bring it all to a boil over high heat and then simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove it from the heat and give it the opportunity to completely cool before continuing with the jarring process.
Next, put the heated herbs, vegetables, or fruit into the sterilized glass jar and let the vinegar condition in a cool dark place for 2-4 weeks to develop additional flavor.
Finally, strain the vinegar through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth so that it catches any sediment. Discard the herbs and store the flavor infused vinegar in your sterilized bottle. You can store the finished vinegar in a cool, dry place for up to 6 months.