A shrub is a fruity vinegar used in drinks. The basic recipe is one part fruit, one part sugar, one part vinegar. You can add herbs and other good stuff. Mix, let sit at room temperature for a week, refrigerate, and enjoy.
Wild Strawberry Shrub (May 2020)
May 31, 2020
Eun-Joung, Jessica, and I were hiking on Eun-Joung's usual trail on May 31, 2020, when we found oodles and oodles and oodles of wild strawberries. We picked as many as we could, using a plastic glove as storage. The glove was full, but it didn't amount to much, so I decided to convert them into a shrub.
We washed them, put them in a jar, covered them with sugar (maybe a 2:1 ratio of fruit to sugar), gave it a stir, and covered the jar with a paper towel.
June 1-4, 2020
Gave the jar a stir once a day, tasting the spoon each day. It tastes like fresh strawberry preserves. It's hard to say whether or not it's psychological, but I detect a strong perfume / fragrance that I don't normally get with farm-grown strawberries. Jessica confirmed this. These would taste excellent on toast or pancakes right now. Crossing my fingers that I don't eff this up.
June 5, 2020
My strawberry mixture smelled yeasty for the first time, meaning that fermentation is starting! I mixed in equal parts raw apple cider vinegar, and moved it into a larger, sterilized jar. Planning on leaving it out at least three days, maybe longer, to let the fermentation get going even more, then will move it into the fridge.
Tasted the spoon. It already tastes good! It's also sharply acidic. Maybe I should have cut back on the vinegar? Hoping that in a few weeks, the flavor will mellow.
June 23, 2020
Blended the mixture, and added two sugar cubes for additional sweetness. Wanted to keep it out to get it fermenting, but decided to keep it in the fridge for safekeeping.
June 28, 2020
The solids had separated from the liquid and were floating on top. Smeared some of those on pancakes with maple syrup. I thought they were delish; both EJ and Jessica thought they were a little strange with the vinegar.
In the evening, made shrub cocktails. Added and dissolved one more sugar cube. Separated the solids into its own container, added equal parts vodka to the remaining shrub liquid. I had about three cap fulls — probably about 4.5 ounces. Put 1-1.5 oz in a cup, added a few drops of bitters, and filled the rest of the glass with soda water. Yum. The acid gave a subtle tinge to the whole affair, and I'm glad I added the extra sugar. Very, very tasty. I'm a believer.