Raisins are concentrated grapes. Their sweet and slightly caramelized notes seduce us into using them in ways beyond cookies and condiments. We have made ribbons and crisps. We have used them in sauces to add depth. We have added them to Rye to add sweetness and complexity. We have added them to vermouth and then separated removed the alcohol to make a raisin vermouth concentrate. And of we course we have smoked raisins, using them to add a smoked complexity to sherry.
It dawned on me this morning that we had not used raisins to enhance vinegar. The combination of raisins, vinegar, and time will add the same sweetness and complexity that we experienced in the alcohol infusions. Many vinegars are bracing and thin, leaving you wanting something more when you taste them. So today I added golden raisins to our Tequila vinegar and our sweet vermouth vinegar. And now we wait.
Ideas worth exploring: utilizing other dried fruits and vegetables in all these applications.
May 25, 2005