For me, summertime is all about the evening drinks on the patio. The crisp kombucha when you come home after a long day; the gin and tonic to accompany the summer BBQ; or that glass of herbal iced tea on the lawn - the moments when you can just sit and take it all in, that's summer. Typically our fridge is stocked with some probiotic drinks (our two favourites here + here), bubbly water for mixing, and lots of fresh fruits for freezing into ice cubes or reducing into concentrates.
On a recent trip to the market I picked up some local peaches but fell short of ideas of what to do with them. We had just recently had galette, it was too hot for cake, and our salads already were overflowing with toppings that I'm not sure they could have handled some punches thrown in the mix. Then I remembered drinking vinegar!
My first experience of having fruit flavoured drinking vinegar was thirteen years ago when I travelled to Japan to visit my brother. We were on the Northernmost island of Hokkaido where foods not typically thought of as Japanese, like sausages, cheese, and fermented goodies are popular. On one outing my brother took us to a gigantic log cabin that was jammed packed with fresh, local produce. He handed me bowls of straw mushrooms in broth, pickled daikon, and glasses of this sour and effervescent cantaloup flavoured drinking vinegar. Now you have to image this is long before kombucha was on every grocery store shelf, so my mind was blown.
Since then drinking vinegars have come around and are now nearly everywhere. Last time I was in New York with Gab and Jodi we hit up the Ace Hotel and lo and behold they had fancy shrub cocktails on the menu. A shrub is a simple fruit based syrup that can be made with just about any fruit and spice combinations, mixed with vinegar, and topped with sparkling water. This one is loosely based on the one I had at the Ace with a little twist of cardamon and cinnamon. I've mixed these spices with some peaches (but nectarines would do), some crushed ice, and a splash of gin (if you dig it). Voila, summer time's best friend.
WEEKEND LINKS + LOVES
- Love this little round up of kitchens over the decades. I'm pretty much drooling over every kitchen except the 90's + 2000's. A little too close to home if you know what a mean.
- The pit falls of eating "clean" and othorexia over on the Guardian is definitely worth a read. A little bit of balance goes a long way.
- I'm really enjoying Anya's series on self care where she interviews our favourite bloggers about their mind and body rituals. I'm so delighted to see sweet Renee interviewed in this last post <3
- This week I'm craving these energy bars from Mountain Rose Herbs, Elenore's veggie loaded smoothie bowl, Laura's epic looking (and let's be honest, box checking) vegan-sugar free-grain free- cookies, and finally Erin's beautiful blueberry ricotta.
CARDAMOM SPIKED PEACH SHRUB
Print Recipe Here
450 g (1 Lb) Peaches, Chopped (about 4)
¾ Cup Sugar of Choice (I used unrefined cane sugar)
1 Cup Water
5 Cardamom Pods
1 Cinnamon Stick
1 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
Soda water to serve
- Combine the peaches, water, sugar and spices in a small pot and bring to a simmer. Cook over low heat until the fruit is tender and soft and lots of flavour has be released - at least 15 minutes.
- Strain the mixture (keep the fruit for ice cream or oatmeal, it's not needed anymore). Combine the fruit syrup with the apple cider and chill. When it's time to make a drink add a splash of syrup to a cup (less or more depending on taste) and top with soda water. Add some gin for something a little special if you're in the mood.
- The syrup should last in the fridge at least a week.