Hello, everyone! I know summer is moments from it’s curtain call but, honestly, thank goodness for autumn. Besides the local apples, thick soups and spiked hot drinks that come with the season, the best treat will be a well-earned break.
I’ve barely kept up with the relay race of summer produce. How about you? Just when I finally got around to using up the rhubarb, strawberries brightened, fast and furious. The jam wasn’t even canned when blackberries and raspberries added to the harvest pile. And then bushels of peaches perked up, sweet and soft and too quick to ripen. It was enough to seriously drown me in daily late night canning projects.
One night while pickling, I tossed some too ripe fruit into white wine vinegar and – voilà – my life instantly eased. Every week, extra ripe fruit now becomes bright fruity vinegar. Rhubarb, strawberry, blackberry and raspberry vinegars glisten from the shelf. With a snipped length of ribbon and a swipe of a marker, they’re my instant last minute gifts.
Fruit vinegar is definitely a cure-all of sorts to dull weeknight meals. I use it to lighten up salads and love a little rhubarb vinegar added to a pan sauce for roast pork. This basic fruit vinegar recipe isn’t sweetened but mixed with a little simple syrup, a quick fruit shrub emerges; it’s great with bubble water and a bit of booze. After all, we’ve earned it, right?
Oh, and if you’re curious as to what happened with the canvas that we used for these photographs, well, I can’t bring myself to wash it – I love all the colorful speckles!
The recipe is below… and just in case you want to talk fruit vinegars or other small batch food this weekend, I’ll be sampling and selling food from our shop at Anthropologie – come say hello!
- 1 part fruit (picked over, cleaned, stemmed and chopped into 1-inch chunks, as needed)
- 1 part white wine vinegar
- Sterilize a large glass jar and lid. Set aside.
- In a pot over medium heat on the stove, combine the fruit and the vinegar.
- Smash and stir the mixture with a fork to help break up the fruit and distribute a little color.
- Bring to a gentle boil and boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool just a few minutes.
- Pour the warm mixture into your sterilized jar and store it away on a shelf for 5 days.
- Strain the vinegar from the fruit - toss the fruit - and pour the vinegar into a newly sterilized jar.
- Store on a dark shelf and use liberally within six months, or gift it to friends all season.
Eat Boutique is an award-winning shop and story-driven recipe site created by Maggie Battista. After hosting pop-up markets for 25,000+ guests, Maggie is now focused on opening her first permanent Eat Boutique–a food-retail concept space with a new way to the very best food. Her second cookbook, A New Way to Food: Recipes That Revamped My Pantry & Made Me Love Me, At Last, will be published by Roost Books/Penguin Random House in 2019. Her first cookbook, Food Gift Love, features more than 100 food gift recipes to make, wrap, and share and is available wherever you find favorite cookbooks.