Maple vinegar is a favorite of ours for its rich, nuanced flavor. It's not a product that can be found commercially so there is a real reward in trying this recipe at home. Once you have it in your pantry, you'll easily find many different uses for it. It's wonderful drizzled over roasted squash or balanced with a touch of cayenne and butter and brushed over a roasted chicken or simply spooned over a rich, runny piece of brie and accompanied by crisp apple slices. The possibilities are endless.
950 grams maple syrup
800 grams live vinegar (we prefer red wine vinegar, though cider vinegar works as well)
300 grams dark rum
200 grams water
Combine all the ingredients in a glass vessel large enough to hold them, and cover the opening with cheesecloth to allow for ample air flow to reach the vinegar stock. Store the container in an undisturbed, dark spot for at least four weeks.
After four weeks, test the vinegar for development. Once the alcohol has been completely fermented out of the stock, strain the vinegar and store it in sealed bottles or mason jars. It can be used immediately and will improve with age.
If you don't have a live wine vinegar to start the maple vinegar, you can buy unpasteurized cider vinegar, easily found in health food stores, to start your homemade vinegars.
It'll be soooo much easier just to buy vinegar =P
But at least now you know what goes into it! Actually making vinegar at home is pretty easy, as with many things, understanding the underlying process is the hardest part. :)
Sure it's easier to buy it... but it will be quite difficult to find a Negroamaro or Nero d'Avola wine vinegar for instance :-)
Who knows if favourite wines will make also favourite vinegar :)
Aki, why in grams and not mililiters (tablespoon/teaspoon)?
>> It'll be soooo much easier just to buy vinegar =P
Hello, and welcome to a section of PopSci entitled "DIY". That's short for "Do It Yourself", not "Buy It Yourself"! Talk about missing the point.
I've wondered about making vinegar properly before, this is pretty interesting. I'd like a bit more detail besides "stick stuff in a jar with other live vinegar", but I'll go with that for now, at least. Here in wine country north of San Francisco, CA, we have plenty of neat varieties of grape juice to play with! It'll have a home in my "dark things brewing" UV-sensitive cupboard, next to the homemade vanilla extract with the good beans and the hint of spiced rum.
Nice idea and thanks for the tips
Wonderful idea, I am definitely going to try it.
Wonderful article, we are embarking on a gourmet vinegar making trial, and this article has helped me understand the process, and I feel come up with a nice balance between home making (great taste), and commercial production (larger batches and more product). Going to try that Maple one, and going to try a honey mead one as well.
I've got my first attempt at DIY vinegar going and just realized, like a fool!, that while my jar is glass, the spout is sealed with plastic! is this a problem?! I know vinegar can react with plastic & bad things will happen, i don't quite know what tho. Its a very small surface area of plastic & its been about 3 weeks & everything looks & smells fine so far :/ Any thoughts?