Peach Sweet Sipping Vinegar

You know me: taking a pull off the brine from anything pickled is my kind of hit. But there's something to be said for intentionally mixing a nice vinegar into some seltzer with a dash or two of bitters that seems to elevate me from the pickle crack house to the vinegar garden party. Luckily, another recipe is making the rounds that is perfect for my late summer brine fix: the fruit shrub.

Fruit Shrub:
3/4 c mashed fruit (peeled, pitted, etc.)
3/4 c white sugar
1/2 c white vinegar (to taste)

Mix the sugar into the peaches. Don't be afraid to be rough with it. The solids get thrown away at the end of this, so make sure they give their all.

Refrigerate for a few hours or up to a few days, stirring as necessary, until the sugar dissolves and the mix becomes a syrup.

Press through a fine mesh sieve.

Whisk in the vinegar. You may do this to taste; many recipes call for an equal amount of vinegar to fruit but I, I, had to stop at 1/2 cup. It should taste very bright and sweet, with a strong tang of vinegar. It should not burn your nose hairs off. Store in the refrigerator.

Add a tablespoon of your shrug to some seltzer water with a dash of bitters and serve in a fluted glass.

Because around these parts, vinegar has gotten quite civilized.




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