White balsamic vinegar is one of my favorite types of vinegar. I always have white balsamic vinegar in stock since I use it to brighten my dishes. I use it in dishes that need to have a sweet, tart flavor.
So what is white balsamic vinegar? Manufacturers make white balsamic vinegar using unfermented white grape juice.
The grape juice is pressure-cooked until it caramelizes to form a syrup. White balsamic vinegar is usually pressure-cooked so that it does not brown.
The syrup is then fermented to form alcohol that acetic bacteria attacks and turns into vinegar. This vinegar is aged in barrels for several years. Aging the vinegar is important because it ensures the flavor and aroma of the vinegar are concentrated.
White balsamic vinegar is golden in color. Compared to balsamic vinegar, it has a milder flavor.
A lot of people prefer using balsamic vinegar because it in no way interferes with the color of your dish.
I’m pretty sure you’ve had those moments when you add balsamic vinegar to your salad dressing and end up with a brown salad that is not so appealing to the eye.
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White balsamic vinegar uses
Most people think that white balsamic vinegar should only be used in salads. If that is all you use it for, you are definitely missing out. Here are a few interesting uses for white balsamic vinegar.
- In sauces and soups
You can add a splash of white balsamic vinegar to your sauces and soups to give them that amazing taste. White balsamic vinegar complements tomato-based sauces and soups. Add it towards the end of your cooking for the best flavor.
- Let it be a syrup
Yes, you can use white balsamic vinegar as a syrup. Simply cook it down to reduce it to a syrup and sprinkle it over your scoop of ice cream.
- In marinades for meat and tofu
White balsamic vinegar is a great addition to meat and tofu marinades. Just mix a little bit of the white balsamic vinegar with a dollop of mustard and sliced shallots for an easy marinade.
- In cocktails
You can use white balsamic vinegar to make your cocktails even tastier. The white balsamic vinegar adds a sweet-tart flavor to your cocktails.
- In braised dishes
White balsamic vinegar is a great addition to braised dishes. Add a splash of vinegar to your dish towards the end of your cooking. It will brighten up your dish and give it a rich and slightly sweet flavor.
White Balsamic Vinegar Substitutes.
When choosing a white balsamic vinegar substitute, I suggest going for one that has a neutral flavor and will not overwhelm your dish.
Most of these substitutes will give you good results, and you may not even be able to tell the difference. Here are the three most suitable substitutes for balsamic vinegar.
- Rice wine vinegar
Rice wine is made from fermented rice. Manufacturers make it by first converting the sugars in the rice to alcohol and then ferment the alcohol with bacteria to form rice wine vinegar.
Compared to other varieties of vinegar like white vinegar and malt vinegar, rice wine vinegar is mild and less acidic. Therefore, it is suitable for use in salad dressings, marinades, pickles, and sautéed veggies.
I love using rice wine vinegar as a white balsamic vinegar because of its neutral flavor. The fact that it is not too acidic is a plus because the mild acidity simply enhances the flavor of the dish without overpowering it.
Another reason why I love using rice wine vinegar as an alternative to white balsamic vinegar is that it does not alter the color of my dishes, especially the light-colored ones.
So if you are looking for a substitute that will not interfere with the appearance of your dish, rice wine vinegar is your best bet.
Rice wine vinegar is readily available since most supermarkets stock it. You are likely to find it in the Asian section of your supermarket.
You can also buy rice wine vinegar in specialist Asian grocery stores in case you live close to one. They always have rice wine vinegar in stock.
- Balsamic vinegar
If the color is not an issue, you can use balsamic vinegar. The origin of balsamic vinegar can be traced back to Italy. The word ‘balsam’ describes something that is oily and aromatic.
Manufacturers make balsamic vinegar using the unfermented juice of grapes. They first cook down the juice to a consistency that is similar to that of a syrup.
This ensures that the flavor and aroma of the juice are concentrated and the color is dark. They cool it, then ferment it to form alcohol he s. Balsamic vinegar usually contains other ingredients like thickening agents, coloring, and flavoring.
Balsamic vinegar is one of the most versatile kinds of vinegar. It is used in marinades, sauces, salad dressings, rich gamy foods like duck liver pâté, and it can also be drizzled over aged cheese.
Alternatively, you can serve a thimbleful with your dessert to ease your digestion process. I recommend serving it after supper.
Balsamic vinegar has a rich, sweet taste and mild acidity. This makes it suitable for most recipes that call for white balsamic vinegar. Just use it sparingly considering it has a more complex flavor.
You can buy balsamic vinegar in supermarkets or grocery stores. You’ll find it on the aisle that has oils and vinegar. In case you prefer traditional balsamic vinegar, I suggest going to Italian specialty shops.
These shops stock the traditional balsamic vinegar that has no additives. Alternatively, you can buy balsamic vinegar at reputable online sites that specialize in vinegar and oils. Remember to store balsamic vinegar in a cool, dark, place.
- White wine vinegar
White wine vinegar is another suitable substitute for white balsamic vinegar. Let us start with the basics.
White wine vinegar is arguably the most versatile type of vinegar. In fact, most people call it a miracle ingredient because of how versatile it is.
White wine vinegar has a very crisp, sharp, concentrated taste. It contains water and acetic acid. Compared to the other varieties of vinegar, white wine vinegar is more acidic.
Although white wine vinegar has a concentrated flavor, you can still use it in most recipes that require you to use white balsamic vinegar. However, I recommend using it in recipes that call for a lot of sugar, like marinades.
The sugar in the marinade will tone down the aggressive acid from the vinegar. You can also use white wine vinegar in barbecue sauces.
You can use white wine vinegar in other recipes that call for white balsamic vinegar, but you will have to tone down its concentrated flavor with other flavors from spices and herbs. You can also dilute it with water to tone down the acidity.
Another use for white wine vinegar is when you are making pickles. White wine vinegar comes in very handy especially when you do not have time to ferment them.
Simply soak your chopped vegetables in a jar of white wine vinegar for the best-pickled veggies in an hour or two.
Health benefits of white balsamic vinegar
Other than enhancing the flavor of dishes and brightening them, white balsamic vinegar also offers several health benefits.
Here are some health benefits of using white balsamic vinegar.
- Reduces blood sugar especially when you eat it in your meal.
- Improves skin health using antioxidants and antimicrobial compounds.
- Lowers cholesterol using its antioxidants.
- Promotes digestion since acetic acid has strains of probiotics that aid digestion.
- Aids in weight loss.
- Reduces hypertension by reducing high blood pressure over time.
- Reduces acid reflex
- Promotes circulation of blood
- Treats wounds( it has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties.
White balsamic vinegar is one of those ingredients that you can easily run out of. It has happened to me on a few occasions. I ran out of balsamic vinegar right when I wanted to use it in a recipe.
So what do you do when you have no white balsamic vinegar in stock and your recipe requires you to use it? The answer is pretty simple. Use a white balsamic vinegar substitute. There are three substitutes you can use that will give you good results.
Rice wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, and white wine vinegar are suitable substitutes for white balsamic vinegar. You just need to pay attention to how to use them in your recipe, and which dishes they are best suited for.
Rice wine vinegar is my favorite white balsamic vinegar for several reasons. It has a neutral flavor, does not change the color of my dishes, and complements all the recipes that call for white balsamic vinegar. I use balsamic vinegar when making marinades and salad dressings because of its complex flavor.
White wine vinegar is also a good substitute. Just be wary of the aggressiveness of the acid and tone it down using water, herbs, or spices.
All these three substitutes have always given me good results. Try them out and let me know whether your dishes turn out okay.