If you’re a big fan of good food and killer ingredients, then you are very familiar with one of the great elixirs of the world — aged balsamic vinegar. This gorgeous nectar has tantalized taste buds for centuries, and while it hasn’t necessarily lost popularity in the culinary world, it has become one of the ingredients that’s been championed by the rise of foodies everywhere. |
Over the last few years, more people have become big fans of really enjoying the food they eat beyond just the yumminess. They appreciate the artistic presentation, the use of local ingredients, and above all else, they are enamored by the attention to detail when it comes to pairing flavors. This hyper-focus is the mark of the foodie, but it has also made its way into the everyday kitchen. Take a look around, and people have started taking a greater interest in making the kitchen the central hub of the home.
Home kitchens feature commercial-grade equipment, and there is a desire to use high-quality ingredients even if they are at a bit of a premium. Enter aged balsamic vinegar. The multi-barrel, multi-year process of creating this amazing ingredient is what has cast an almost mythical aura over it, but in recent years, people have started finding widely available bottles of the stuff for a few bucks on grocery store shelves. Clearly, this is not the fine Italian product that can sell at a couple hundred dollars per ounce.
Let us assume that we’re working with an aged balsamic that’s somewhere in the middle of these two price extremes. The question still remains — what do you do with it? If you’re one of the folks that’s looking to make a splash in the culinary arts with some nice aged balsamic vinegar, here are a few uses that you may not have thought of:
Salads — A drizzle is all you need, and while some may venture into emulsification, that would entail adding more stuff to what’s already a great product. Let it speak for itself.
Marinades — If you’re intent on combining flavors with the balsamic vinegar, use it to marinade pork, chicken, and beef. A little will go a long way, but the flavor profile you’ll create will be something else.
Finish A Meal — In the same way you can use a touch of extra virgin olive oil to top off a dish, aged balsamic can do the same but in much more complex manner.
Dessert — Pair it with strawberries, figs, apricots, or even chocolate truffles, and you’ll never eat dessert the same way again.
Soda Alternative — If you’re giving up soft drinks but still want some fizzy goodness in your life, try aged balsamic vinegar with some sparkling water.
It’s important to note that aged balsamic vinegar is gaining momentum in terms of its domestic production, which means you can get really well-made balsamic without the plane-ticket premium price that comes with the imported stuff. Moreover, this gives you a chance to buy as locally as possible, which supports small business, and you also get unique tastes that really capture beautiful areas of the country in a bottle.
For the best aged balsamic vinegar in Texas, look no further than Texas Hill Country Olive Company.
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