A Vinegar a Day | 5 Januar | Cocoa for Ascetics

Vinegar, hot water and a few spices come together for a perfect(ly austere) January warmer

It won't surprise you that we at the Artisan Vinegar Company think that good vinegar goes with pretty much anything. (Not vanilla ice cream, you say? Challenge accepted.) Thus, I've decided to write one vinegar recipe per day this week — just to show the myriad uses of this wonderful sour liquid. Enter Day 5.

It will be clear by now that I love drinking vinegars — that's the verb 'drinking' plus the noun 'vinegar', as well as the newbie compound noun 'drinking vinegars', by the way. Hot or cold, the bracing acidity and complex fermented flavours of a good vinegar always tickle the tastebuds and can be extremely refreshing in beverages.

Naturally, I find this predilection for drinking vinegar to be eminently reasonable; you, of course, may not wish to take the advice of a woman who will quite happily eat her favourite mustards out of the jar by the spoonful. (Perhaps it's because they usually contain so much vinegar?)

Regardless, I shall press on.

Suppose you find yourself, on a blustery January evening, wishing to curl up with a good book and a cup of hot cocoa, but you cannot face any more sweet, chocolatey things after the Christmas period (or you just want to feel virtuous). In such a situation, you could try this cider vinegar tisane: it's warm and spicy, it's tasty, and it's good for you.

Ingredients

Method

Slice a small knob of fresh ginger into matchsticks (hot tip: ginger need never be peeled). Put into your favourite mug with the cinnamon stick and, optionally, a spoonful of honey. Fill up the mug with boiling water and stir. Now add the vinegar — 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp, depending on the size of your mug — and stir again. Allow to steep for a few minutes while inhaling the baked apple-like fragrance, and enjoy.

— Beatrix Swanson

(Image credit: Wikipedia Commons)

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