Summer fruit is too delicious and the best way of keeping it around is to preserve it. Shrubs have been making a comeback, combining fresh seasonal fruit with vinegar. This strawberry tarragon shrub is a delicious way of preserving all those strawberries you picked last weekend! Serve it at your next party as a mocktail option!
What is a Shrub?
Shrubs are fruit flavored vinegars and a way of preserving seasonal fruit when there was no refrigeration. Drinking vinegar has been around since the Babylonians, who mixed date vinegar with their water to make it safe to drink. Fast-forward to 15th century England, prior to refrigeration, fruit was preserved in barrels of vinegar, and British sailors drank it to prevent scurvy. Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, shrubs became even more popular when mixed with liquor. Shrubs were mostly drunk with rum or sparkling wine, with sugar or honey added as a sweetener.
The basic recipe for a shrub is:
1 part fruit
1 part sugar
1.5- 2 parts vinegar
Why Make a Shrub?
Shrubs are a fun way to add a sweet yet tart dimension to your cocktails and mocktails. Vinegar is known to curb your appetite and is also great for gut health. I take a shot of apple cider vinegar every morning! You can add your shrubs to a salad vinaigrette or simple dilute them with ice water and sip on them in the afternoon!
Is Shrub Making Easy?
There are a few ways to make a shrub. The true way requires no stove, boiling, heating etc… After allowing the fruit to marinate in the sugar for a full day, you combine the vinegar and fresh herbs and let it sit for a few days before straining. In this particular method, I heated up all the ingredients on the stove for about five minutes. Honestly, they taste the same, so pick whichever way you’d like to make your shrub! There is no right or wrong way.
Herbs to Use!
Vinegars to try!
Get creative and have fun with this!!! The possibilities are endless.
Strawberry Tarragon Shrub
This strawberry tarragon shrub is the perfect zing to your summer cocktail! It’s sweet and tangy and a great way to preserve seasonal fruit!
- Cook Time10 min
- Ready in2 days
- Yield2 cups
For the burger
- 1 heaping cup of fresh strawberries
- 2 tablespoons tarragon
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup white wine vinegar or white balsamic
- 1/2 cup water
Preparing the spices
Combine the fresh chopped strawberries with the sugar and water and let sit in a bowl for 24 hours
Pour mixture in a sauce pan with the vinegar. Slowly bring to a boil and simmer for about five minutes
Pour into a clean one pint mason jar and add the chopped tarragon. Let sit for 24 hours uncovered and then strain out
Store in a new clean jar in the fridge for up to a month.
Add to seltzer water, tonic water, or dillute with regular water. Tequila is a great addition to shrubs!