4/8/2010 9:15 PM
Well, I have been poked and prodded and begged for my “Semi-Famous” Balsamic Vinegar Sauce and here, for the first time, I am about to reveal it! I have been told that people actually pay good money to buy this same stuff from the local gourmet market that you can make for pennies at home. And this recipe is really very easy.
What makes my recipe so tasty (I’m not bragging, this is just what I have been told) is that I use more than one vinegar in the recipe. And in addition to granulated cane sugar, I add honey. But here is the big secret – depending on the kind of honey and varying amounts of the different vinegars I use, the sauce can be fine-tuned to really show off the dish it is made to complement.
For instance, the basic vinegar that I use is a balsamic, but I also add in a few spoonfuls of red or white wine vinegar and some fine Tupelo Honey. If, for instance, we have a garden picked spring-greens salad with pine nuts, baked chicken, raw Granny Smith apples and (thin) red onion slices I will use Orange Blossom Honey and with the balsamic vinegar base toss in some Apple Cider Vinegar. If you read the Wikipedia entry on vinegar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vinegar) you can see how many different flavors of vinegar there are, not counting how many different kinds of flavored vinegar can be made. Then buzz over to the National Honey Board and check out the honey varietals and their different colors, scents and flavors (http://www.honey.com/nhb/about-honey/honey-varietals/). You can write a recipe book of different sauces that can be made with this simple-to-cook base.
What follows is the basic FloridaGardener.com’s (Semi-Famous) Balsamic Vinegar Sauce. Now remember – you can be creative with this! Tune it to the dish.
What you need:
1.5 qt sauce pot, a whisk or long handled spoon and a measuring cup
1 cup of white granulated cane sugar
2 cups of balsamic vinegar
What you do:
Put sugar in the pot and turn the stove to medium heat.
Measure out 2 cups of balsamic vinegar and pour into the pot. Stir. Keep stirring. Stir until it comes to a medium boil. Keep stirring!
When the sauce starts to form big bubbles, shut off the heat and take the pot off of the burner.
DO NOT TASTE! You will seriously scald your mouth, tongue, throat and esophagus. This stuff is well above the boiling point of water and will seriously burn you. Let it cool to the touch before tasting.
Set aside to cool. Once cool enough to pour into a bowl you can put it on the dish or, if using it for a salad that you do not want wilted, place in the refrigerator until cold.
So there you have it! Be sure to experiment with different flavors. If you find one you think is especially great, share it by posting below.
Happy Gardening and good eating!