Living in California for so many years I got used to stepping out my back door and snipping whatever fresh herbs I needed from one of the long planter boxes that lined our screened porch. Those planters got lots of morning sun and then dappled shade as the day wore on, and by the time the heat was blistering the bricks on the rest of the patio they were protected in shade. There was no such thing as a growing season, they flourished all year long.
It was quite a luxury that I took for granted. Here in New England our local nursery closes the day after Christmas. It will open again next spring, but in the meantime I’ll be getting my herbs out of the little clear plastic boxes that hang in the produce section of my market. That’s ok, they’re pretty cheap and they usually have a good selection. The only problem is I’m often left with handfuls of leftover herbs.
If you have leftover tarragon like I did after yesterday’s Roast Chicken, why not use some of it to make homemade Tarragon Vinegar. You can use almost any empty glass jar or bottle you have.
DIY Tarragon Vinegar
- Sterilize a glass bottle or jar with a tight fitting lid. I filled mine with water and heated it in the microwave until it boiled.
- Rinse the tarragon and put several sprigs into the jar. You can break up or bruise the herbs if you want to in order to bring out more of the flavor, but I just left mine as is.
- Fill the jar with any plain vinegar you like. I used cider vinegar because I love the flavor. Make sure you completely submerse the herbs.
- Cap or cork your bottle and set in a cool dry place for a couple of weeks. The flavor will get stronger the longer it sits. When the flavor is as you like it, pull out the tarragon.