Twice in the last month I’ve been asked by pals precisely what it means when a vinegar comes ‘with the mother’.
They were both (un)lucky enough to be in my house, so I’d showed ‘em.
I’ve been making my own vinegar for a few years.
I say ‘making’ but I don’t really do any work.
I just pour any leftover wine (insert oh-so-British joke here) with equal amounts of water into a jar and ‘the mother’ does the rest.
The mother is a naturally occurring, benign microorganism.
It’s called aceto bacter. And like a lot of us, it loves the booze.
The more booze it consumes, the bigger it gets. (Also like us, sadly).
Over time, then, it starts to develop a physically visible presence – a slippery disc of jellyish magic.
This can, in all honesty, look fairly disgusting, but there’s growing evidence that it does ya a whole load of good. You can read what Dr. Axe thinks of it all here.
Anyway, the truth is that my vinegar ain’t a patch on those made by Stein or Sarah and Andrew. Which is why my wife buys theirs.
On that note, the market is open.
And you should definitely take a look at the new Sunday Lunch section….
PS – pear tarte tatin? Yes please.