How to make rhubarb vinegar
I morphed from being an avid beetroot hater to a real fan all thanks to Nigel Slater’s method of making beetroot carpaccio (post to come) – a sort of light-touch curing method as opposed to the heavy-handed approach of the nuns who schooled me.
I have been so taken by this method that I began experimenting with it. I started by using raspberry vinegar, as I thought the sweetness would enhance the flavour of the beetroot. And then I thought that rhubarb vinegar might do the same, but in a more subtle way.
I was right. And there are many other ways that you can use rhubarb vinegar.
Uses for rhubarb vinegar:
- To make beetroot carpaccio (post to come)
- In vinaigrettes used for fish salads of one kind or another:
- In a salad niçoise
- In a vitello tonnato
- In a salmon salad
- Or in other salads – a smoked chicken salad for example
- To moisten smoked trout or smoked mackerel
- To moisten cooked chicken
- To deglaze a frying pan
- A few drops in a glass of cold, carbonated water on a hot day
- It makes a good and unusual present
Storing rhubarb vinegar
Keep in a cool, dark place and use within about six months.
Recipe for making rhubarb vinegar
Makes about four cups
- 400g/14 oz rhubarb
- 900 ml/3¾ cups cider vinegar, or sherry vinegar, or white balsamic condiment
- 1 vanilla pod
- Trim and cut the rhubarb into 2cm/1” lengths.
- Put into a non-reactive saucepan (ideally an enamel casserole or ‘Dutch oven’ – a Le Creusset or a Staub) with the vinegar, and boil for a couple of minutes. With a wooden spoon bruise the rhubarb against the side of the saucepan. Take off the heat and leave to cool.
- Pour the mixture into a sterilised jug*, cover with clingfilm, and leave for a week in a cool, dark place.
- Strain the mixture through a muslin, or a coffee filter, into a sterilised bottle*.
- Drop in a vanilla pod.
*Follow this link for various easy methods of sterilising glass jugs and jars.