If you have never had a truly aged balsamic vinegar drizzled over ice cream or fruit (especially fresh strawberries with balsamic vinegar), you are missing out on a wonderful taste experience.
The problem is that the top aged balsamic vinegar is very expensive per bottle. Do what chefs do. Chefs have learned to do as the Italians do – reduce your inexpensive balsamic vinegar with a little brown sugar to make Faux Aged Balsamic Vinegar. It is a good second! Fortunately I have an easy recipe to recreate this at home if you have the ingredients.
Aged Balsamic Vinegar, or as it is known in Italy as Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale Vinegar, accumulates its flavor in a variety of wooden casks for as long as one hundred years. The result is a very concentrated dark brown, thick sweet vinegar, and it is a great luxury.
- 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar, commercial grade*
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, gently boil the balsamic vinegar for 4 minutes until thickened.
Add the brown sugar and boil for an additional 2 minutes longer to reduce the mixture. Remove from heat and let cool.
Makes 1/4 cup.
* Commercial-grade balsamic Vinegar is the least expensive ones that you find in your grocery store.
Source: I slightly adapted this recipe by cookbook author Julee Rosso. Julee and her husband, Bill, own the Wickwood Inn in Saugatuck, MI.
Categories:Balsamic Vinegar Condiments - Sauces - Butters - Relishes - Jam and Jelly Recipes Cooking Lessons - Cooking 101 Herbs, Spices and Seasoning Hints & Tips Italian Recipes