Balsamic vinegar is an Italian ingredient that's widely underused. Sure, it's great on salads but have you ventured to try it on other foods? Below you'll find some great ideas for using balsamic vinegar to highlight the flavor of pastas, meats and even dessert.
Now, we must make it clear that when we talk about balsamic vinegar we are referring to the traditional balsamic vinegar of Modena, which is naturally sweet and dense thanks to being aged in wooden casks for a minimum of three years and up to 25 years. Since it is a pricy ingredient, it's best to use it sensibly.
Italians take their balsamic vinegar seriously (it's production is regulated and protected by the government) and you should too. Learn more about it with this nifty infographic and take a look below for some great tips on how to use balsamic vinegar:
1. Pair it With Pork
A splash of traditional balsamic vinegar from Modena gives these seared pork fillets an extra layer of flavor. For best results, wait until the meat has done cooking to drizzle on the vinegar.
2. Drizzle It On Pasta
Balsamic vinegar makes salads sing so drizzling it on spinach-filled tortelli (pictured up top) takes things just one step further. You can try this with other stuffed pastas like ravioli or cannelloni.
3. Try it With Foie Gras
Foie gras and balsamic vinegar were made to go together. This creative recipe from renown Italian chef Massimo Bottura proves it. It's a sweet and savory foie gras ice pop with a balsamic center.
4. Serve it on Berries
Strawberries and balsamic vinegar are a traditional Italian pairing. The duo works well because aged balsamic vinegar is naturally sweet, complementing the flavors of the berries. Try this spectacular recipe.
MORE: Meet Alessandra Medici, The Taste Keeper of Balsamic Vinegar