It’s 100% accurate to say that I am officially addicted to balsamic vinegar. As in, I might have to start a series of recipe posts in which I share the 101 ways I am currently guzzling balsamic vinegar.
I know. It’s a strange love affair, but it’s sincere.
A fancy shmancy oil and vinegar shop opened on our town square and it’s all the rage. They pair olive oils with flavored balsamics and host fun little tastings. A friend and I popped by to see what all the fuss was about. And we fell in love.
I got home that evening and found a huge box on my front porch. I didn’t remember having ordered anything, so in a flurry of packaging popcorn, the kids and I unwrapped…drumroll…12 bottles of balsamic vinegar from a company I had previously agreed to collaborate with and review their product! I freaked out and sent a quick text pic of the balsamic jackpot to my balsamic lunch buddy.
Joel and I were invited to dinner with friends the following Saturday and I was asked to bring bread. I took this opportunity to load up my prized balsamic collection, hit up Panera for some Asiago Cheese Bread and BAM, I was party ready.
I laid out tasting bowls and poured samples from each bottle so friends could taste for themselves. Everyone loved it. And would you believe that THIS BRAND tasted EVEN BETTER than the gourmet store on the Square?
The more I learn about the world of balsamics, the more I appreciate the chance I have to review this product. Who knew that balsamic vinegar begins with the crushing of sun-ripened grapes which produces grape juice called “must”? It is then concentrated through simmering in copper caldrons over wood fires until it is reduced to about 40% of its original weight. This densely concentrated liquid is placed in wooden barrels of oak, cherry, mulberry, chestnut and juniper for aging. As the years go by some of the liquid in the barrel evaporates and some is absorbed into the wood. Each year the vinegar is transferred into smaller barrels of different woods. It’s really a science and yet an art! I loved learning how the higher the percentage of grape must, the thicker the consistency and sweeter the taste! Put the aged 65% must over vanilla ice cream and your taste buds will sing! And if you want to fall in love with cheese or strawberries all over again, drizzle the aged balsamic fo shizzle.
That dinner party was 3 weeks ago and I haven’t stopped
drinking enjoying this stuff! I’ve been experimenting and pinning my little heart out looking for more ways to incorporate these flavors (and the health benefits) into our meals, so I thought I’d share a current favorite that I came up with recently!
De Nigris Balsamic Addiction =
Bacon Roasted Balsamic Brussels Sprouts
Layer a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spread out bacon on prepared sheet.
Starting with a cold oven, set the temp to 400 and let the bacon cook until the oven is preheated.
While the oven is preheating trim the stems of the sprouts and cut in half. Toss Brussels, olive oil, salt, pepper in a glass bowl to evenly coat.
When bacon is finished, drizzle 2-3 tablespoons of the rendered bacon fat off the baking sheet onto the Brussels and toss again.
Remove bacon from baking sheet, chop. Spread out the Brussel sprouts onto the sheet that held the bacon, but now just has rendered fat.
Cook Brussels Sprouts for 10-12 minutes or until nicely browned.
While the Brussels sprouts are roasting, place the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes or until it is thickened and lightly coats a spoon
Toss roasted Brussels sprouts with the crumbled bacon and drizzle all that yumminess with a heaping helping of De Nigris Balsamic Vinegar.
Serve and watch even your husband and children scarf down their vegetables!
For other great recipes using De Nigris products (all of which I have fallen in love with) follow the #DeNigris1889 hashtag. And come back, because I can’t fight the De Nigris Balsamic Vinegar feeling and will be using them in plenty more dishes! The whole De Nigris line is available at your friendly neighborhood Walmart and/or Amazon.com and while this is a sponsored post, y’all know all opinions are my own! xoxo