companion blog to the e-book the 24/7 Low Carb Diner

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Herbal Vinegars

I am one of those who likes the tang of vinegar. These are among my latest projects. I gave up gardening and stuck to herbs this year. With the heat wave we are having, I am glad I did. I hear tomatoes are no longer fruiting and cucumbers are deformed around here. I could make that happen without excessive heat, knowing my "green" thumb. My herbs are doing fine though, so I am enjoying these. My first batches are ready to use. They impart a nice herbal flavor, not overpowering, but definitely there. I am using them for vinaigrettes and in uncooked tomato sauces.

All you need to do is place cleaned sprigs of herb into bottles of vinegar. Let them age for about two weeks, at room temperature, then use. I plan to give some as gifts, but right now we are enjoying the blends. One is basil and oregano, the other is lemon basil. More will come. I am buying more vinegar today. Just use a mild vinegar so the flavor will stand out. I experimented with a plain white, and the flavor is a bit too tart. My favorite is the rice vinegar in the small bottle. Just be sure to get the unseasoned or you will be getting sugar.

I have been blending my vinaigrettes with MCT (medium chain triglyceride) oil for the added health benefits, but any oil will do. Just use flavored vinegars in the ratio of vinegar to oil that you prefer. Try leaving the additional seasonings out until you taste the herbal flavor. Then adjust for more garlic or salt and pepper. I use chalk marker on my bottles, so I can change the label when it is empty. The chalk will wash off with water, but stays on while using.

If you have fresh herbs, give this a try. It is too easy. I plan on making some tarragon vinegar later today.

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