Monday, 14. September 2015

Vinegar - Pure Enjoyment for Thousands of Years

Vinegar is one of the oldest foods in the world and has a place today in every kitchen. Not only does vinegar provide for culinary enjoyment or preservation, it also has many positive effects on your health. There are various methods to produce vinegar. The best vinegars are still produced using traditional methods, ensuring a flavor that modern methods can't copy.

The production of vinegar is one of the oldest production processes of food. A so-called mother of vinegar is required to produce vinegar. This mother of vinegar is based on alcohol and acetic acid bacteria.

From the Egyptians to the Babylonians and the Romans, peoples throughout time have highly valued vinegar. At that time, vinegar was recovered from soured fruit juices, beer or wine, and was often mixed with water. It was highly esteemed as a cooling drink. Since the drinking water was often contaminated with germs at this time, it was often only drinkable through the addition of vinegar.

Vinegar was used in ancient times for medicinal purposes. From Hippocrates use for respiratory diseases and indigestion, the remedies have been handed down.

Even in the Middle Ages, vinegar was used as a remedy. It was used to disinfect the body and was used to try to stop plagues.

Different types and varieties

There are many different types and varieties of vinegar. These are distinguished by the production process and the raw materials used.

There are two different ways to manufacture vinegar. Vinegar can be obtained by fermentation with the aid of acetic acid bacteria or by dilution of vinegar essence. These essences have an acid content of 25% and are produced on the basis of acetic acid. The latter is either synthetic or derived by processing wood waste. The latter method produces industrial vinegar.

Let us turn to fermented vinegars. Again, there are several methods that have been developed over time to produce these vinegars. The most advanced are designed to quickly produce large amounts of vinegar, to fill the of great demand. This is, of course, at the expense of quality.

The raw material, an alcohol or starchy liquid is always mixed with vinegar bacteria. This ferments the sugars with the aid of oxygen. It is an oxidation process. That is the basis, although the respective flavors may be different.

The Orléans method was probably discovered by accident.  For this method, the raw liquid is simply mixed with vinegar bacteria and the fermentation process takes place in open kettles without further interference. Bacteria then builds on the surface. If the alcohol has been processed into acetic acid, the vinegar is simply drained under this skin. This process is very time consuming, is suitable only for smaller batches and also runs the risk of a faulty fermentation. It can not really be used industrially. Over time the process has evolved.

The submersion method is an even faster method in which the bacteria are added directly to the liquid and air is artificially fed in. This procedure takes between one and three days and produces only vinegars which have virtually no flavor, but are acidic.

The individual vinegars are differentiated according to the ingredients. First, there is the variety in which alcohol is the base material. The main representatives are z. B. Hesperidenessig vinegar (Austrian specialty), alcohol vinegar or vinegar.

  • The group of vinegars from farinaceous materials include beer vinegar, malt vinegar or eg. rice vinegar. Here predominantly starchy raw materials are used.
  • Wine vinegar is based on wine.
  • Fruit vinegars are prepared from fruit juice.
  • Balsamic vinegars are the kings among the vinegars. For the best varieties, a production time of up to 30 years will be needed. These vinegars are aged in wooden barrels where they mature slowly. They are characterized by their incomparable flavor and excellent quality.
  • There are also flavored vinegars.

Diverse Uses

Vinegar can be used in many ways. In addition to its main function as a seasoning, it is also an important ingredient for mustard. High quality vinegar can also be enjoyed as an aperitif or digestif. Diluted with water, it makes an excellently refreshing drink for hot days. As a preservative, it is used mainly for pickles. As previously mentioned, vinegar is still used today as a remedy, and even plays a role in cosmetics because of its disinfectant properties. Not least, it is used for descaling.

Vinegar and General Well-being

For millennia, high-quality vinegar has used as a natural remedy. The Egyptians swore by its positive health effects. The effects are varied. Due to its low pH, of vinegar is said to have the following effects, among others:

  • Ethyl enzyme assists in the processing of fats.
  • Strengthens the intestinal flora.
  • Vinegar can be used as a disinfectant.
  • Rumored to have antipyretic effects (vinegar wrap)
  • Since acids cause a basic reaction in the organism, vinegars affect the acid-base ratio in a positive manner.