Friday, November 2, 2012

Nasturtium Vinegar

I love nasturtiums.  They are among some of the prettiest flowers.  I've grown them before; usually the jewel mix, but I like the Alaska mix too - the foliage for those is mottled with white.  This year however, I found a pack of mahogany nasturtium seeds.  Oh - I wanted to grow those.  I've made nasturtium vinegar with the other varieties, and I liked the reddish orange color it turned out, but I could just picture the lovely red that would most likely result from using the mahogany flowers.
They are absolutely gorgeous, don't you think?
To make the vinegar, you'll want to cut off a bunch of the flowers, but beware, bees and other stinging things love nasturtium as much as you do.  I received a very painful reminder of this as I was picking.  And once I had them inside and was giving them a rinse, I discovered another little stinging critter, this time a bumble bee, in among the flower heads.  I took the whole bowl back outside to coax him out of there.  I don't use chemicals on my garden, but I rinse off the flowers just to make sure there aren't any creepy crawlies in there.
Once you've divested the flowers of all of their little hitch-hikers, put them in a quart jar and pour in enough white vinegar to cover them.  You'll have to push them down, as they like to float.  You could use white wine vinegar if you like.
Let it sit for about a week and then strain off the flowers.  I lined a small, fine mesh strainer with several layers of cheesecloth and set it directly on top of a wide mouth pint jar.
Warning - it smells pretty yucky when you first take off the lid, but once the spent flowers are out it will be fine.
There you go.  It did turn out a beautiful color, and I can't wait to use it in a vinaigrette. 
 Another reason to love nasturtiums - they taste peppery, and I like pepper.

I've linked this post with the Farm Girl Friday Blog Fest.

I've also linked with the Homestead Barn Hop,

There are plenty of great ideas and useful information being shared through these blog hops.  I hope you get a chance to check some of them out.

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  1. Wow~ they look magnificent! Beautiful on the plant and a gorgeous colour in the bottle. I'm not sure that I would go for that flavour but the look is spectacular!

  2. I agree. The vinegar is such a lovely shade of red, it would look pretty just sitting on the counter in a decorative bottle. And my pictures couldn't do justice to the beautiful flowers.

  3. What a great idea! I love to make vinegars and have never had enough nasturiums to make it with. I believe I have finally figured out what I have been doing wrong...(too much sun!) I will have to pick up the mahogany kind and give those a try next year! Blessings, Nancy at livininthegreen

    1. I wish you well with your nasturtiums next year. Mine did okay when planted on the east side of the house, but they have done much better planted on the west side, which is shaded until noon, and then gets late afternoon shade as well because of the trees to the west of the house.

  4. Hello! I’m stopping in to invite you to join us at the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week!

    I hope to see you there!
    The Chicken Chick