Chive Blossom White Wine Vinegar adds a whole new level of flavor to your foods. The blossoms have a very mild onion and garlic taste to them. When steeped in a warmed white wine vinegar, you’ll get an amazing savory oniony infused condiment.
What Are Chives
Chive is a green vegetable that is closely related to the onion. The chive plant grows wild in Europe and Asia, and is cultivated in most parts of the United States. Here in the US, we consider it an herb and usually grow it in our herb gardens.
The root is a small, egg-shaped bulb, from which grow long, thin, tube-like leaves. The plant bears showy lavender flowers.
Chives contain a fairly large amount of vitamin C. I’m a believer in sourcing my vitamins and minerals from organically or home grown foods.
How To Use
People chop the leaves of the chive plant and use them to flavor food. For example, chive leaves may be used in salads, soups, omelets, and cheeses.
Additionally, chive blossoms can be added to soup, salads, sauces and vinegars. They are also a wonderful addition to egg and potato dishes. Give them a try on cottage cheese or any other savory foods you love.
Types Of Vinegar
When it comes to vinegars, you don’t have to only use white wine vinegar. You can use many other types as well, including plain white vinegar. It will give you a very bright pink color from the chive blossoms. Champagne and rice vinegars are tasty alternatives. The list goes on, so experiment with other vinegar types in small batches. You may just discover a new flavor that you really like.
One of my favorite ways to us the chive blossoms is to make chive blossom white wine vinegar!
When To Harvest The Chive Blossoms
When it’s harvest time for the chive blossoms, you’ll want to pick them early while they are dark lavender in color and the tiny flowers have opened. You don’t want to wait to pick them when they begin to lose their lavender color. The lighter they get, the more they lose their oniony garlic flavor.
Use Clean Kitchen Shears
When I harvest my blossoms, I usually use a pair of clean kitchen shears. You can just snip the flower heads off at their base. You’re going to want two cups of chive blossoms for a small batch, or enough to fill a quart canning jar for a larger batch. I usually pick enough to fill a quart jar because I use this chive vinegar in many recipes.
The flowers will stay in their round shape when you clip them, making it easier to rinse them off.
Rinsing The Chive Blossoms
After you’ve picked the amount of chives you want, it’s important to give the flowers a bit of a soak and rinse. You want to make sure any bugs and dirt are removed from them.
Strain your washed chives and gently shake them to remove as much water as you can. A couple swirls in a salad spinner works well too.
Filling the Jar
1. First, fill the canning jar with the chive flowers up to the neck of the jar. You’ll want that extra room in the jar when adding the vinegar.
On the other hand, If you’d prefer to try out a smaller amount of chive blossom vinegar, try just two cups of chive flower heads and 2 cups of vinegar.
Warm The Vinegar
2. Now, take your vinegar and pour it into a sauce pan. Warm it up, but not to the boiling point. Slowly pour the warmed vinegar over the top of the chive blossoms up to the base of the neck of the jar.
3. Next, take a spoon or knife and gently tap the flowers down so they get covered in the vinegar. They will pop back up, but no worries, they will sink a bit after steeping.
4. Instead of using the metal flat lid that comes with the canning jar, I use a square of Press and Seal plastic wrap to cover the mouth. Then, I like to use a metal canning band to hold it on.
5. Once the jar is covered, place your chive blossom vinegar in the refrigerator for two weeks so the flavors can meld. A little tip: before I put my jar into the fridge, I like to set it outside on my patio table for a day two to heat up in the sun. This really helps to intensify that wonderful onion and garlic flavor in the vinegar.
6. After the vinegar has sat for the two weeks in the refrigerator, you’ll want to strain it through a flour sack cloth or similar material. I like to use a yogurt strainer. It strains quickly and the mesh is very fine.
7. Pour the strained vinegar back into a clean jar and discard the used chive flower blossoms.
8. After that, you’re ready to use your chive blossom vinegar anyway you’d like! It’s tasty by itself as a condiment, or used in sauces, dressings, or anything you want.