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Also Known as
white vinegar, sirka, cooking vinegar
A traditional ingredient in French cuisine, white wine vinegar is a popular ingredient in many British dishes too. It takes its name from vin and aigre, meaning 'sharp wine'. Good vinegar should have a light delicate taste (no unpleasant sharpness) and be bright and clear. Many of the vinegars available are interchangeable and the only consideration is to personal preference.
White vinegar can be made by oxidizing a distilled alcohol. Alternatively, it may be nothing more than a solution of acetic acid and salt in water. They are made from grain (often maize) and water.
Natural vinegars also contain small amounts of tartaric acid, citric acid, and other acids. Vinegar has been used since ancient times, and is an important element in Western, European, Asian, and other traditional cuisines of the world.
How to Select
Choose from the wide range of brands available in the market. Buy as per the need - small, medium or large bottle. Confirm on the manufacturing date.
· In marinades, to tenderize as well as to flavour.
· To give piquancy to rich foods.
· It makes a good substitute for lemon juice in dishes and can be used to savoury dish or in sweet dishes such as meringue.
· In chutneys and relishes the acid in vinegar acts as a preserving agent.
· The main ingredient, along with olive oil in classic French dressing.
· It is also used in sauces and marinades.
· Vinegar is used in the pickling process during food preparation. Most of them time though, they are also an essential component of marinades, salad dressings, sauces, and condiments.
· In the pickling process, vinegar is often used for dill pickles and peppers.
· As condiments, vinegar is used to flavor potato chips or the British-style fish and chips.
· Often tossed with herbs, spices, and oils, vinegar can also be sprinkled directly on vegetables and fruit for a delicious, fragrant salad.
· Make creamy vinaigrette by adding some plain or whipped cream to a mixture of 1 part white distilled vinegar to 3 parts oil.
· To add a zesty new taste to fresh fruits such as pears, cantaloupe, honeydew, or others, add a splash of rice or balsamic vinegar. Serve immediately to prevent the fruit from becoming mushy.
· When boiling or steaming cauliflower, beets or other vegetables, add a teaspoon or two of white distilled vinegar to the water to help them keep their color. This will also improve their taste, and reduce gassy elements. This also works when cooking beans and bean dishes.
· Make pasta less sticky and reduce some of its starch. Add just a dash of white distilled vinegar to the water as it cooks.
· Give some extra zest to your white sauce by adding 1/2 teaspoon of white distilled vinegar.
· To keep frosting from sugaring add a drop of white distilled vinegar. It will also help keep white frosting white and shiny.
· Make perfect, fluffy meringue by adding a teaspoon of white distilled vinegar for every 3 to 4 egg whites used.
· Perk up any can of soup or sauce with a teaspoon of red or white wine vinegar.
· If you've added too much salt to a recipe, add a spoonful of white distilled vinegar and sugar to try correcting the taste.
· Turn out great rice by adding a teaspoon of white distilled vinegar to the boiling water.
· Olives or pimentos covered with white distilled vinegar can be kept almost indefinitely if refrigerated.
· It is an ingredient in sauces such as mustard, ketchup, and mayonnaise.
How to Store
Store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Unopened, it will keep indefinitely; once opened it will keep about 6 months.
· Soothe sunburn with a spray of white distilled vinegar, repeating as often as you like. Ice-cold white distilled vinegar will feel even better, and may prevent blistering and peeling.
· For cuts and scrapes, use white distilled vinegar as an antiseptic.
· Get rid of foot odor by washing feet well with antiseptic soap daily, then soaking them in undiluted cider vinegar for 10 minutes or so.
· If commercial aftershaves cause rashes and itching, try using undiluted white distilled vinegar as an aftershave lotion.
· Lighten body freckles (not facial freckles) by rubbing on full-strength white distilled vinegar.
· Eliminate bad breath and whiten your teeth by brushing them once or twice a week with white distilled vinegar.