Wild Vinegar's

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Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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There's three things in the bottle. Water. Acetic acid. All the flavenoids that make the distinctive taste and aroma.

All of these things have different boiling points when they evaporate. With water-jacket condensers and excellent temperature control, we can "boil" off the components and collect whatever we want. Like distilling whiskeys and rums.

Then you can do the fun part = putting it back together with adjustments to the proportions, such as the liqueurs, gins and so on.

If you can smell it in the room, you should realize that some evaporating goodies in the flavor are being lost to the air, you can't get them back.

You are going to have to research the boiling points of all kids of bio-chemicals, to capture what you want. For example, to distill a grappa you need to run barely hotter than 72C, maybe about 75C, to get the ethanol. Run at 102C to boil the water and the alcohol, the ethanol, will be long gone!
 

Robson Valley

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Acetic acid is 2 metabolic steps beyond alcohol. You have to keep things clean. Acetobacter is an air-borne organism and once into your containers, it is damn difficult to sterilize and get rid of. Upfucculate the cleaning process and find yourself with 450 liters of bad wine vinegar.

For those who care:

Ethanol is a 2 Carbon (2C) molecule.
First step, we take off 2 hydrogens in an oxidation. This yields energy that Acetobacter can use to make proteins, etc.
The product is the 2C molecule 'acetaldehyde".

OK. Repeat Step One. Take off 2 more hydrogens. Pretty much the same thermodynamics applies here.

The produce is the 2C molecule, acetic acid. In the mean time, all sorts of acids and alcohols are combining as esters to ripen as the complex flavors that we find in these concoctions.

Here endeth the lesson.
 

Robson Valley

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Add some wine yeast of your choice to the fruit, maybe some sugar like a typical fermentation. Let it run until all fizz and bubbling has stopped = it's "fermented out."
In a grocery store, look at the bottles of apple cider vinegar for a cloudy lump in the bottom of the bottle. That's a cloud of Acetobacter. Add that to the must to make certain that you are getting the correct beast to do the vinegar oxidation steps in a predictable fashion.
 

TeeDee

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:D

It's how we make chutney, we boil it down.

Thing is though, you boil off a lot of the vinegar doing it, so it doesn't always increase the taste, iimmc ? I think your best bet is either increase the quantity of the basic fruit or leave it for longer.

I'm guessing one could potentially leave Vinegar to infuse for a VERY long time.
 

Toddy

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I'm guessing one could potentially leave Vinegar to infuse for a VERY long time.
You can leave it so long that whatever you put in it pretty much dissolves. Not ideal for texture of veggies, if I make myself clear, but it's do-able.

Pretty gross, but the monks used to dismember and boil up those dead whose bones they wanted.
They boiled them up in vinegar. It was a way to obtain, "saint's bones", for instance. Rare, and an expensive and laborious undertaking, but known.
 
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TeeDee

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You can leave it so long that whatever you put in it pretty much dissolves. Not ideal for texture of veggies, if I make myself clear, but it's do-able.

Pretty gross, but the monks used to dismember and boil up those dead whose bones they wanted.
They boiled them up in vinegar. It was a way to obtain, "saint's bones", for instance. Rare, and an expensive and laborious undertaking, but known.
Yum , canonized soup..
 
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Robson Valley

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There was a recipe published in The Guardian some years ago for "Major Grey's Mango Chutney." The good Major might be a fictional character, like the Burmese origin of Crab Rangoon from Raffle's Hotel. I don't really care.

Anyway, I followed the recipe several years ago. The chutney is everything they claimed it would be. Patak's: eat your heart out. Mine has aged for a couple of years in the bottom of the fridge, now to use it as an ingredient in plum sauce.
 

British Red

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Dec 30, 2005
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Vinegars (acetic acid) best begin with alcoholic fermentations which are then allowed to oxidize with Acetobacter. Just two dehydrogenation steps beyond the ethanol.
Just once , I was presented with a raspberry vinegar as an ingredient in a salad dressing. Host would not give it up. I've seen nice balsamics go for $70/liter, I would have paid that for 500ml of the raspberry.
I wish you all the best of success in your experiments. Do take great care to write down absolutely every thing that you do. You might just hit on a real keeper.
The best I've made is elderberry vinegar (made using an aceto bacteria mother aerobically suspended in an eight year old elderberry wine) truly stupendous flavour

I cover the basics in our cider vinegar making video series. If anyone wants to get into producing long term vinegar, we can supply mother starters

 
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Toddy: all what i'm doing (following the instructions by a local friend) is to take a bunch of peeled ripe bananas and put them into a container with a loose cover (=to keep fruitflies etc. off). wait about 2weeks and strain the liquid (=to remove the gooey solid part) before bottling. old wine bottles work best for that (booze is the first step after about 2days of fermentation, after that it slowly turns to vinegar as long as oxygen can get to it)

edit: banana vinegar is great for marinating boa and fer-de-lance (about 12 hours for a chunk of large boa, a 5ft fer-de-lance takes about 3hours) before slow-cooking them
 
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TeeDee

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Currently smelling mighty acrid in my little kitchen as I reduce these Vinegars down by 50%.
 

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