Last week I posted the recipe for cherry drinking vinegar used to make a colonial drink called a shrub (concentrated syrup made from fruit, vinegar and sugar poured over ice and sparkling water). When you last saw me, I had pitted and mashed the cherries, covered them with apple cider vinegar and left them to sit at room temperature.
Today I added 1/2 cup of sugar and gently boiled the cherry – vinegar mixture for about an hour (I chose to do it outside on my trusty Weber grill because boiling vinegar has a somewhat pungent odor),
strained the mixture and began a series of taste tests. With some advice from my visiting sister-in-law K, I added about 1/4 cup more sugar and the drinking vinegar was ready to use. My first shrub was delicious — a perfect refresher for a summer afternoon.
The recipe made just shy of three cups of liquid and I am already imagining all kinds of other uses for this vinegar — in salad dressing, mixed with vodka … I think the possibilities are almost endless. The recipe says it keeps indefinitely; I am guessing it won’t be around that long!