Saturday, November 6, 2010

Homemade Healthy Vinegar

I grew up rarely having any vinegar, as my mom didn't really enjoy the taste. Lately, however, I've gotten accustomed to using it more and more around the house. Vinegar is a very versatile food with health benefits and preservative abilities, and also works as a cleanser, deodorizer, and antibacterial agent among many other uses. Vinegar is not that expensive round these parts, but a quick look at the label will show that it is synthetic and chock full of chemicals; making it a pretty unhealthy and unnatural condiment.
Fortunately, with just a few simple ingredients, it is possible to make your own healthy vinegar.


Homemade Healthy Vinegar


Homemade vinegar can be made in a few ways. Yeasts eat sugars in liquids, forming an alcoholic beverage. Acetobacter bacteria then transform the alcohol into acetic acid, resulting in vinegar. Grain alcohol, wine, and even fruit juices and even tea can be made into vinegar, with just one added ingredient- a mother of vinegar.


Like a kombucha mushroom, a mother of vinegar is a "blob" made from a symbiotic culture of specific strains of bacteria and yeast, which transforms carbohydrates into a healthful liquid.
Bragg - Apple Cider Vinegar, 32 oz liquidGetting your hands on a mother of vinegar may be hard to do, but as long as you've got a source of unpasteurized vinegar (like Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar), just add a few tablespoons of that to your liquid, cover with a breathable material, and let sit for 2 or 3 weeks.
In no time whatsoever, you will have healthy vinegar on your hands!
To make this, use whatever kitchen scraps you have to make a juice.
Apple cores leftover from making apple cider can be ground in your food processor and mixed with some water and Bragg's to make your own apple cider vinegar.
The same can be done with pear cores, or even with carrot peels in water. So long as it's sweet, it can be made into vinegar! Of course, you can also use wine, but you will have wasted a good usable thing when you could have made your own vinegar much more cheaply.

On the other hand, if, like myself, you're living in a place where getting live cultures like Bragg's is impossible due to health regulation laws, don't despair!
You can make your own vinegar, just by letting your kombucha sit longer! Seriously, try it!
I've added extra sugar and let my kombucha sit for a while. The less kombucha you have in relation to kombucha mushrooms, the faster it'll turn to vinegar. When I leave just a cup of tasty and sweet kombucha in a jar, in about 3 days it becomes vinegar, even with no mushroom inside. When I have a large jar and add 2 or three mushrooms, it'll become vinegar also pretty quickly.
I just made a salad dressing with my homemade kombucha vinegar. It was so tasty and delicious! I don't think I'll ever buy adulterated synthetic vinegar ever again!

Have you ever made vinegar before? Would you ever make it? Do you use synthetic vinegar or just the healthful kind? What do you use vinegar for in your home?

1 comment:

  1. I just retired as a special education paraeducator this spring, but have been hired back as a substitute. I am having trouble keeping up with the garden and my attempts at getting organized, but am hoping to start making bread and salad dressings again. I also remember making mayonnaise a long time ago. I used to keep a nice batch of sour dough going, which I'd like to do again, but I don't remember ever making vinegar, and am just seeing this word, kombucha in these food groups.

    (I am 60 now, but I see you and I have something in common. I nursed our two kids over 2 years each, and we had a family bed, I'm thinking, until the older one started school at age 6, and my husband said that was enough. The two slept with each other for awhile, even though they each had their own bedroom.)

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