Quick Recipes and Easy

Introducing a Great Secret: The Gift of Balsamic Vinegar

The table is the only place where we do not get weary during the first hour. — Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

Emperor Enrico III took the offered bottle in his hand and inspected the flask.

“It is a disinfectant, my lord,” Bonifacio answered nervously.

“Yes, I have heard of this before. It is made from grapes?” Enrico questioned.

“White grapes,” Bonifacio answered.

“Should I give this to my servants for cleaning?” Enrico questioned.

“Oh, my lord, it is of far more value than that. It has certain medicinal qualities.” Bonifacio started falling all over himself as he sought to impress the emperor. “The servants at Canossa castle have even used it with remarkable success in certain recipies. I can say with confidence that the food at Canossa is exceptional.”

“I can see the truth of your words, my corpulent friend,” Enrico answered as he passed the balsamic gift flask to his maidservant.

* * * * *

There may be many within your circle of influence that have never had the rare and stunning honor of trying a dish served with balsamic vinegar. Consider balsamic as a perfect gift thought. The very versatile Modena balsamic vinegar provides radical taste in everything from fish to ice cream and fruit to salad.

The pricing structure for authentic ‘aceto balsamic tradizionale’ balsamic vinegar may seem as if you are purchasing liquid gold. Perhaps, on one level, you are. You see, while the uses for balsamic vinegar are many, the amount needed for recipes is often measured in drops. The flavor is so concentrated that a pint-sized bottle of Modena balsamic vinegar will provide a gift that will be a long-term investment in excellent will and the memories that accompany such a thoughtful gift thought.

What follows are a few tips to pass along when giving Modena balsamic vinegar as a gift…

A non-reactive pan should always be used when marinating.

Never use aluminum pans or containers with recipes using balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinaigrette.

As small as a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar greatly enhances the flavor of soups and sauces.

There are some inexpensive varieties of balsamic vinegar that contain sulfites (a preservative). Only accept balsamic vinegar that is preservative free. Right balsamic vinegar has an indefinite shelf life.

Heat mellows the flavor of balsamic vinegar – it also causes the vinegar to taste sweeter. Adding balsamic vinegar at the end of cooking should provide the proper taste.

While some use balsamic vinegar for a base in herbal balsamic vinaigrettes, many do not recommend it for such use.

When harvesting fresh strawberries or raspberries from your garden you might be surprised how much the favor is enhanced by using a sprinkle of balsamic vinegar and a dash of sugar.

The gift of Modena balsamic vinegar is either an introduction to a fantastic secret – or it is the thrill of receiving one of the world’s greatest tastes.

Balsamic vinegar makes a perfect gift thought for birthdays, housewarming gifts, Christmas gifts and those moments when you just want someone to know that you care. Find a right Modena balsamic vinegar, like that which is produced by Villa Bellentani, its worth every penny. Cruets.com has several varieties.

James Zeller writes for gourmet gift related websites and blogs such as Cruets.com . Here is a selection of cruets.com/Scripts/prodView.asp?idProduct=303 gourmet oil and vinegar that he found, and a creative collection of cruets.com kitchen gifts.

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