how do you use tomato vinegar?

i saw it in a food store the other day. would like to hear how u've used it

  • Posted by: alan
  • February 10, 2022


Lori T. February 10, 2022
I've used it, and even made it a few years back. Basically it's just another sort of vinegar, really. It's made in the same way, using a vinegar mother and time to ferment the juice into vinegar. It tasted a lot like tomato, with a sour vinegar back - pretty much what you would expect it to taste like. I used it to make salad dressing, and to brighten up some grilled meat bastes to finish with. A lot of the taste will depend on the variety of tomato you used to make it with, a "fruitier" one will make a slightly sweeter vinegar, and a nondescript supermarket sort will get you, not much I think. If you wanted to make your own, your first step is to get the fruit juice. Then you need to add in yeast, to ferment the juice into a kind of tomato wine- and then add in the vinegar mother to finish the process. It takes a few months of patience, as with making any vinegar. And thanks for the question. I was perusing my seed catalogs, dreaming of gardens as the snow is flying outside and wondering what all I would grow and preserve. And now, I'm thinking lots of different kinds of tomatos- and making some vinegar to go with the sauces and soup!
AntoniaJames February 10, 2022
Lori, this is so helpful! I'm dreaming of my garden, too, as I pick my way over the ice and snow here on my morning walks. ;o)
aargersi February 11, 2022
Now I want to try this! I have a little bit of an over planting “problem” (not problem :-) based on the 120 tomato starts in my greenhouse 😬 do you have a preferred resource for the correct yeast and mother? I’ll go ask Mr Google some questions too …

P.s. I will be sharing tomato plants with my neighbors
Lori T. February 11, 2022
I don't need to source either yeast or mother to make my vinegar because I have both on hand. If you needed to purchase it, I would suggest using a yeast formulated for wine, particularly for champagne if possible. I get mine in dry form from a local brewer's supply place- but you can order it on line as well. My "mother" originally came from a bottle of organic vinegar that contained bits of it, and I've propagated since - but you can buy an established on online or at some brew supply businesses. It's cheaper to buy a bottle of vinegar at the shop though, and what I would recommend. If you are buying supplies and can do so, I also suggest buying a hydrometer as well. If you measure the solution before fermentation, and start with at least 5-7% sugar or higher, then you get better vinegar. To check the vinegar strength, get yourself some pH paper strips as well. You want your vinegar to be about a pH of 4. And pH strips are easier and cheaper than figuring out the acidity by titration, etc. Less fiddly too.

I originally made it because in the canning prep process, I simply ended up with a lot of extra tomato juice- more than we'd drink or use in soups. I was making apple cider vinegar at the time as well, and thought it would make a neat experiment to follow with the kids. Congrats on so many successful seedlings. I won't be starting mine for another couple weeks, :} Sounds like you have some lucky neighbors.
AntoniaJames February 10, 2022
I've never used it - haven't seen it a store near me - but I've read about it. I would use it on raw tomatoes, or on salads and salad-y dishes where a bit of acidity is needed, but where you want to avoid the sharpness of a wine vinegar. For example, when making a tartine, I'd lightly toss the arugula or butter lettuce in a light splash of it before assembling the tartine.

Thanks for asking this question. Now I want to find some! ;o)
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