Ah, Chive Blossoms. I think the lavender-pink petals are delicious when sprinkled over salads, pastas, and other foods that benefit from a unique hint of onion. The flowers are in bloom for only a short time (here, mid-May to mid-June). But you can enjoy their unique taste and beautiful color all year long if you make a simple infusion called Chive Blossom Vinegar.
Next, grab a glass jar with a tight fitting lid. To insure the jar is clean, just run it through the dishwasher. As you can see, I used an old-fashioned pint-size jar. It’s equipped with a metal clasp that holds the lid in place. An ordinary jar with a screw-top lid will work as well.
Oh. If you’d like to find vintage jars, just do what I did, and scour your local “junktique” shops. I purchased six such jars for a dollar each.
Now, in my original chive blossom vinegar recipe from 2012, I advised readers to place the jar outside in the sun for 2 weeks. But sunlight isn’t necessary to make this flavored vinegar. Just set the infusion on your counter, or place it in a cabinet.
In 24-48 hours, the vinegar will turn a lovely blush tone. Then, after two weeks, the condiment will develop a deep pink color and a wonderfully intense onion flavor. At this time, strain out the blossoms, and decant the brew, if you wish, into a more attractive bottle or jar.
Although Chive Blossom Vinegar makes a welcome host or hostess gift, you might want to hoard the condiment all for yourself. I’ve found that when I mix this vinegar with olive oil for salad dressing, I don’t have to add any additional herbs or seasonings. The vinegar also lends its uncommon flavor to cabbage slaws and potato salads. Serving fish and chips? Use the chive infusion as a superior substitute for tartar sauce, just as all English pubs do.
Think you’ll make this pink perfection before your chive blossoms are history? I certainly hope so. Trust me, on some cold, snowy day in winter you’ll be happy to have this little reminder of spring!
Here’s the copy-and-paste version of the above:
Chive Blossom Vinegar
Kevin Lee Jacobs (www.kevinleejacobs.com)
Ingredients per 1/2 cup vinegar
7-10 freshly-snipped chive blossoms
1/2 cup vinegar (champagne or white wine vinegar is preferred, although common white vinegar will work)
Special Equipment: a perfectly clean glass jar with a tight-fitting lid
1. Put the chive blossoms in the jar, and cover them with the vinegar. Attach the lid, and let steep on your counter top or in a cabinet. After 2 weeks have passed, or when the vinegar turns a deep shade of pink, and it develops a rich, onion-y aroma, strain out the blossoms. If desired, decant to an attractive jar or bottle.
Use as you would any other vinegar — in salad dressings, in coleslaw, in potato salad, or as a dipping sauce for fish and chips.
The vinegar will keep for several months — if not for an entire year — in a cool, dark location.
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