Broiled Apricots with Traditional Balsamic Vinegar

grilled apricotes with basamico

Broiled Apricots with Traditional Balsamic Vinegar

Ingredients

  • 12 ripe apricots, cut in half with pit removed
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Place apricot halves in ovenproof baking dish, sprinkle with sugar, and place a dab of butter in the center of each one. Put the dish under a preheated broiler for about ten minutes or until the sugar bubbles and starts to turn brown. Remove from the broiler and serve with a few drops of aged traditional balsamic vinegar.

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Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale is one of the most traditional and most precious ingredients of classic Italian cuisine. The production process is relatively simple, challenging only by the time. Balsamic vinegar is made from grape must varieties Trebbiano and Lambrusco. Its production is subject to strict rules. The must is first heated over a fire in an open copper vats until it is a dark concentrated syrup 30-50% of the original must. Then the concentrated must is stored over winter until spring when it is allowed to pass through an alcoholic fermentation. After fermentation it is introduced to the “Aceto Madre”, in a barrel from which it starts a long process of maturing in a series of acid batteries. The acid batteries are the most important secret of balsamic vinegar. The battery is a set of different-sized barrels of different types of wood with a capacity from 80 to 15 liters. The grape must is first turned into the biggest barrel and then gradually poured into smaller barrels, decanted and refilled once a year for at least 12 years. After time, a small part of the last keg of vinegar may be collected and added to the previous barrel, then back to the previous and so on to the first barrel of acid in the battery to replenish the “Aceto Madre”. The barrels used in the battery are made of eight different wood (mulberry, cherry, acacia, chestnut, ash, juniper and pear). Each vinegar factory orders their own wood species and uses their own combination of barrels, which dictates the final flavor and style of their vinegars. When the balsamic vinegar is mature, it has a thick consistency and sweet flavor. It is true that the older the vinegar, the better, more comprehensive and more concentrated flavor. Traditional balsamic vinegar is aged for at least 12 years. Traditional balsamic vinegar is not cheap, but anyone who has taste the power and perfection of really old vinegars understand that the enhancement of many foods is really just a few drops of this precious elixir and cost invested is returned in the pleasure received. 

In my picture is a bottle of Balsamico Trentino. It is the only production of this kind in the Trentino.  Traditionally, balsamico is produced in Modena or Reggio Emilia.

 

 

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