Here is the new Herb this week…good for cooking and easy to grow.
Tarragon vinegar is commonly made with white wine or champagne vinegar, but feel free to try sherry vinegar or apple cider vinegar as well (steer clear of regular white vinegar – it’s just too pungent and overwhelms the delicate tarragon flavor). Use a ratio of about 1 part tarragon to 1 part vinegar (e.g., in the recipe below, I use one cup of tarragon leaves to one cup of vinegar). Make sure you use French tarragon, otherwise your DIY tarragon vinegar won’t taste like much! Another nice touch: stick a stem of tarragon in your finished vinegar (after the straining step, below) for decoration and to help you remember what kind of vinegar you made! Here’s a good recipe for a basic vinaigrette – just sub the vinegar in the recipe with your tarragon vinegar and start drizzling over some veggies!
1 cup tarragon leaves, washed and dried well
1 cup white wine, champagne or other light vinegar (see above)
Bruise the tarragon leaves just slightly with the back of a knife – you don’t want to cut into the leaves, just bruise them slightly to release their delightful flavor. Add the tarragon leaves to a small glass jar or container (I just used a small Mason jar). Pour over the vinegar and cover. Let sit in a cool, dry place for at least a week, and ideally 2-3 weeks, to let the tarragon flavor develop. You can give the jar or container a shake every once in a while to help the process along. Strain the tarragon leaves from the vinegar. I just poured the vinegar back into the jar I made it in, but you can decant it into a fancier bottle or container. Glass is best. If you like, add a sprig of tarragon to the final mixture.