What is a shrub you ask? Imagine an equally tangy and sweet concoction that also curbs your appetite. Think of it as a delightful appertif you can serve your guests. It’s a fabulous conversation starter. Let’s make a lavender blueberry shrub for sipping on!
The word shrub derives from the Hindi word “sharbat,” which is a syrup flavored with fruit and herbs or flowers. A shrub by definition is a non-alcoholic syrup made of a combination of concentrated fruits, aromatics, sugar, and vinegar. Shrubs were quite popular during the prohibition as a fun and different alternative to alcohol, and they are making a big come back today, as more people are turning to mocktails rather than cocktails.
So if you want to preserve that bold, fresh seasonal fruit you picked up at the farmer’s market last weekend, this is a fun way to do it! The possibilities are endless!
Why Drink Vinegar?
Vinegar has been used medicinally for centuries. It was believed to be antimicrobial by the greek who treated wounds with it externally, and the Romans drank it as a weight loss elixir. Unfortunately not much studies have been done on vinegar and its benefits. But hey, we know when flavored, it’s really delicious!
I first made this lavender blueberry shrub in an herbalism focused class I took, called Kitchen Witchery. The two flavors remind me so much of summer. This pairs exceptionally well with a bit of carbonated water, and a splash of elderberry syrup. This is just one recipe of hundreds of combinations you can make with fruit and herbs and vinegar. Get creative with produce you have on hand! Let me know in the comments what you come up with!
How to Make a Lavender Blueberry Shrub
- Prep Time10 min
- Ready in1 week
What you need:
For the burger
- 1/2 cup blueberries- frozen are fine
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 1.5 tablespoon culinary lavender from Mountain Rose Herbs
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar I use the Austin brand Other Mother red wine vinegar. A nicer red wine vinegar is going to be more palatable than apple cider vinegar.
Preparing the spices
Toss blueberries with coconut sugar. Cover and let sit in the fridge for three days.
Chop lavender to release the flavor. Combine lavender and red wine vinegar. Cover and let sit in the fridge for three days.
After three days, strain out blueberries, using a mesh strainer, pressing them through with your fingers to squeeze out every bit of juice.
Strain out lavender into a separate bowl.
Mix the liquid from the blueberries and the infused red wine vinegar together.
First taste it. It naturally sweetens with the blueberry sugar. If you’re keen for more sweet, add a little maple syrup or honey, and let sit in the fridge for a few days before using to let the flavors marinate.
This can be used as a part of an herb vinaigrette. I like to add a tablespoon of it to olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and use on a salad. Or simply dilute with water or carbonated water and drink over ice!