“Here is a pleasant ‘refresher’, specially suitable for the young after lawn tennis or sports on hot days, but acceptable also to their elders when exhausted by church, depressed by gardening, or exasperated by shopping”
-Agnes Jekyll, Kitchen Essays
You can buy raspberry vinegar – and the version made by Demijohn is a really excellent option. However, it doesn’t take long to make, and this recipe below gives a really excellent result. It will last for about a year.
You can do the same thing with strawberries, blackcurrants and blackberries – it doesn’t matter if the fruit is a little elderly, it’s a good way of using it up.
And at a pinch you can substitute, as one Saucy Dressings reader successfully discovered (see chicken with raspberry vinegar) for cider vinegar and grenadine.
Uses for raspberry vinegar:
- chicken, raspberry and asparagus salad
- use it in a marinade of olive oil, garlic, parsley, and mustard to marinate mushrooms in the fridge overnight.
- as a refreshing drink mixed with fizzy water, or lemonade, or ginger ale, and ice. Jekyll says this tastes ‘like the elixir of life on a hot day, and is as pretty as it is pleasant.’
- in a dressing with a salad of baby spinach and bacon (when you fry the bacon, in a little olive oil, add also some raspberry vinegar, then scrape the pan juices to make the dressing)
- secret ingredient for coleslaw
- in a strawberry and avocado salad
- over Yorkshire pudding
- fry shrimp and scallops briefly in butter with a finely chopped banana shallot. Serve with a mix of two parts sour cream to one part raspberry vinegar
- a sauce for ice cream
- add to gravy
- because of its sweetness, like balsamic vinegar, you need proportionately less oil than usual in a dressing
- with a grilled goat cheese salad
- add a dash to pavlova
- make a hot blackcurrant sauce for ice cream by heating with blackcurrants and a little honey
- in a creamy sauce for chicken
Recipe for making raspberry (or any other fruit) vinegar
- 480 ml/2 cups white wine or cider vinegar
- 400g/14 oz raspberries (or as mentioned above, strawberries, blackcurrents, or blackberries)
- 75g/⅓ cup caster sugar
- Put the raspberries into a glass bowl and crush them lightly with the back of a wooden spoon. Cover with cold vinegar.
- Cover with cling film and leave for a couple of days in the fridge, shaking occasionally.
- Strain through muslin or through a jelly bag, squeezing out as much juice as possible.
- Transfer to a non-aluminium pan.
- Add the sugar – taste it every now and then – you don’t want it to be too sweet.
- Heat gently, stirring until the sugar has dissolved and then bring to the boil.
- Boil for 10 minutes and let cool
- Then, as Agnes Jekyll describes “bottle in nice shaped medium-sized bottles saved perhaps from some present of foreign liqueurs or scent.” Make sure you have first sterilised the bottles – to find out how follow this link.