Deep, glossy, and full-bodied, balsamic vinegar is a popular condiment in a variety of dishes. Known for its distinctive mellow tang with a hint of sweetness, its complex flavour profile can enhance salad dressings, marinades, and sauces. On top of that, it can also be added to cheeses, pasta and meat dishes, vegetables, omelettes, mixed berries, and even ice cream. So, what is it that makes balsamic vinegar so versatile, and how can you incorporate this sumptuous ingredient into your mealtime repertoire? Let’s find out.
What Flavours Does Balsamic Vinegar Go With?
The flavour of balsamic vinegar is determined by the acidification process and the concentration of sweet grape must to acidic wine vinegar and other infusions. Balsamic vinegar must be aged for at least 12 years; however, some varieties are fermented for much longer, reducing their acidity and adding a kick of flavour from the wooden barrels in which they sit. The longer the vinegar has been fermenting, the thicker its consistency will be. The flavour that results is thus unique to the process. Thicker, sweeter vinegars are ideal for marinades and sauces, blending perfectly with maple, paprika, cayenne pepper, and chilli. Lighter, tangier varieties are best used in dressings and fuse well with citrus, honey, garlic, and a variety of herbs. But before you break open that packet of mixed lettuce leaves, let’s explore some unique balsamic vinegar uses.
11 Unique Ways To Use Balsamic Vinegar
From breakfast to dessert, balsamic vinegar is ready to make a splash! Tweed Real Food’s team of lucky taste-testers have compiled the following list of unique balsamic vinegar recipes to add to your repertoire. Just try to get to the end without drooling!
Nothing says comfort food like tender cuts of braised beef or lamb stewing in a rich tomato sauce. Balance it out with a note of sweetness; try Tweed Real Food’s Bourbon Maple Splash Balsamic Vinegar, which also helps tenderise meat. Bon Appetit.
The King of cuisine, Italian food brings all the family favourites: lasagne, spaghetti bolognese, ravioli, tortellini, risotto, polenta, fiorentina, and carpaccio. Our Classic Caramelised Splash Balsamic Vinegar works wonderfully in these dishes, adding another layer of flavour without masking the iconic Italian taste.
Our Cheeseboard Splash Balsamic Vinegar is the perfect condiment for all the classic charcuterie board cheeses. A syrupy vinegar with a warm, fruity flavour, it pairs perfectly with camembert, blue cheese, manchego, goat cheese, gorgonzola, blue cheese, and more.
Fresh summer salads
Evoke the taste of that unforgettable beachside vacation with Tweed Real Food’s Limited Edition Summer Fruit Splash Balsamic Vinegar which we release a couple of times a year. With natural fruit extracts, enhance your next Greek salad, fattoush, mixed greens, or fruit salad with a zesty tropical flavour. Try it with our favourite summertime salad: mango and halloumi mixed with spinach leaves and topped with mint and cranberries.
Treat yourself with our delectable Limited Edition Pina Colada Splash Balsamic Vinegar which we release a couple of times a year. Mix in a teaspoon with a glass of iced mineral water for a delicious beverage that’s equal parts pineapple and coconut, or try a dash of Wild Raspberry Splash Balsamic Vinegar in a mojito for a mouth-watering refreshment.
For happiness on a plate, serve up barbecued brisket with Tweed Real Food’s Honey Garlic Splash Balsamic Vinegar. A finger-licking mix of sweet and sour, the honey-garlic flavour is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser that forms the perfect partnership with tender cuts of meat. Serve with rice, chopped green onions, and sesame seeds for a perfectly balanced meal!
Ice cream & desserts
Balsamic vinegar is the dark horse ready to take your dessert game to new heights. Mixed with heavy cream, butter, and sea salt, our Limited Edition Wild Raspberry Splash Balsamic Vinegar which we release a couple of times a year, creates a creamy yet tangy balsamic caramel sauce. If you’re a pastry lover, combine it with honey and brown sugar for the perfect doughnut glaze. Alternatively, drizzle over baked or fresh fruit, Greek yoghurt, or vanilla ice cream for quick and easy satisfaction.
Bacon & breakfast
The smoky-salty taste of bacon combines with the tangy-sweet flavour of balsamic vinegar to create the ultimate savoury-sweet combo. Our Limited Edition Smokey Bacon Splash Balsamic Vinegar which we release a couple of times a year, is the perfect accompaniment for bacon, oozing a sticky sweetness infused with smoky bacon undertones. This syrupy vinegar also works wonderfully with hash browns, poached eggs, and chorizo breakfast skillets.
Who said sandwiches were boring? Not anymore. Forget your plain old deli slices squashed between two pieces of bread; try sliced sourdough, juicy tomatoes, streaky prosciutto, gooey mozzarella cheese, and aromatic basil leaves drizzled with olive oil and our Bourbon Maple Splash Balsamic Vinegar for an irresistible Caprese sandwich.
Roast veggies make a tasty, nutrient-rich side that complements a range of meat dishes. Make them the star attraction of your next Sunday roast with a drizzle of our Limited Edition Sticky Plum Splash Balsamic Vinegar which we release a couple of times a year. This treacly vinegar is imbued with the rich, slightly tart taste of plums and works well on its own or when combined with soy, garlic, ginger, chilli, rosemary, and basil.
The right finishing sauce can bring an added layer of texture, flavour, and visual appeal to your dish. Gloss your crispy-skinned pork, fluffy potato mash, or crunchy tempura prawns with Tweed Real Food’s gourmet Classic Caramelised Splash Balsamic Vinegar, and experience the deliciously thick and rich flavour of this Italian treasure.
Now you know how to use balsamic vinegar in cooking, browse Tweed Real Food’s full range of balsamic vinegars, and polish your next meal to tangy-sweet perfection.