Vinegars: all about them!

16 09 2010

The historic background of Vinegar dates from old Egypt, as it also has been referred to in the Bible and by the Prophet Muhammad.

Vinegar is a well known condiment for salad seasoning, for marinades and has also various medical properties. Among those medical facts is: reducing cholesterol, controlling blood glucose and diabetic management and increases satiety.

Most common vinegars:

Balsamic Vinegar: It is the most expensive because it is aged for a longer period of time. The longer it’s aged, the sweeter and thicker it gets, and the more expensive too. It is primarily made from grape and it is ideal for drizzling over cheese and greens as an appetizer, or as a garnish or finishing touch to many recipes.

Red and white wine vinegars: These are more for daily use. They are good for salad dressings and marinades. Red wine vinegar is best used with heartier flavors and foods, like beef, pork, and vegetables. White wine vinegar is best for chicken and fish dishes.

Apple cider vinegar: It is mild and inexpensive generally used for making salad dressings. It’s a good choice for marinating fish or chicken.

Rice vinegar: This one is the mildest of all, with much less acidity than other vinegars. It’s often used in Asian or Chinese cooking.

Plain distilled vinegar: It is made from grain alcohol and has a very sharp, unpleasant taste. Use it in very small quantities. It is also used for cleaning purposes.

All vinegars should be stored tightly closed in a cool, dark place. They will last for about a year after opening; after that time, the flavors will diminish. Purchase expensive vinegars in very small quantities and be sure to use them within one year.

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