29 March 2012
Wild Violet Vinegar
Over the course of a few years, I've come across several recipes for wild violet vinegar, sugared violet blossoms, violet liquor and more. It seems like I usually find the recipes in September though and have never made anything with violets. We have an abundance of wild violets under a large stand of pine trees that were just begging to be made into something delicious! I spent a most enjoyable 20 minutes sitting on the dry pine needles, a tiny breeze scented with pine, earth and violet. Surrounded by violet blossoms, pine cones, tiny feathers and our orange cat,Otto, I experienced a calm that's been absent for a while now.
I filled up a shallow dish with flowers, dug through the pantry to find a couple bottles of rice vinegar and a glass container with a lid. I rinsed the violets in a colander and laid them out on kitchen towels to dry. Once they had dried I used about 2 cups of blooms to 24 ounces of vinegar and put the cap on the container. (My container has a metal top, which is a no-no with vinegar. However, there was no chance the vinegar would come into contact with the metal, so I used it anyway.)
I placed the vinegar in a dark pantry for a few days and just brought it out to find the most exquisite pink color and floral notes to the aroma! I'm planning to let mine rest a few more days before I strain and bottle it. (2 weeks total infusing time)
I will strain the vinegar using cheesecloth as it really catches little no-see-ums the best. I will sterilize my jars in boiling water for a few minutes and recycle some wine corks for stoppers. A cute-sy vintage tag will complete my presentation and we will be feasting on a unique vinaigrette dressed salad in another week! I made enough for us to use throughout the spring with fresh salad greens.
I think this would make a lovely Mother's Day gift tied with a beautiful length of ribbon!
I am also planning on making violet jelly and a sweet violet liquor (this excites me on SO many levels) to share with my April Preserving Class at The Boulevard Market! I'll let you know how they turn out!
I would love other recipes for violets if you've got them! Happy Spring!