knocking back a shrub.

i have no idea where i came across the Shrub, but i want to be part of its revival! i am still wrapping my mind around exactly what makes a shrub a shrub, i.e. is it simply a drinking vinegar? or does it become a shrub proper when mixed with alcohol? or mixed with fizzy water?

Wikipedia tells me this (and i always believe everything i read on Wikipedia):
“In terms of mixed drinks, shrub is the name of two different, but related, acidulated beverages. One type of shrub is a fruit liqueur that was popular in 17th and 18th century England, typically made with rum or brandy mixed with sugar and the juice or rinds of citrus fruit.” (This reminds me more of an Old Fashioned cocktail.)

–OR–

“A second type of shrub is a cocktail or soft drink that was popular during America’s colonial era, made by mixing drinking vinegar syrup with spirits, water, or carbonated water.The name also is applied to the sweetened vinegar-based syrup, also known as drinking vinegar, from which the latter drink is made. Drinking vinegar is infused with fruit juice (and at times herbs and spices) for use in mixed drinks.” (This is more like it.)

OK, so i think i got it. it seems that the vinegar (fermented with sugar) and infused with fruit/herbs are the key ingredients to shrubs. from there you can add fizzy water or vodka or whatever! my partner is in LOVE with fermented shit. he makes kimchi and sauerkraut and beer and cider….but have you ever seen ME make something fermented?! no. ’cause i think it smells like sewer. very, very distinct sewer that comes from an RV/motorhome when your dad dumps the shitter into that hole in the ground. yah, that’s what kimchi smells like to me. want a kiss?

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my dreamy husband man is also a farmer, and one day he brought home a handful of rhubarb in which i really didn’t know what to do with. so i let it sit around our kitchen for a while and co-star in images such as this, until i came across this shrub business.

cut up the rhubarb (or other fruit) into large chunks. i think i added 1 cup apple cider vinegar, 1 cup rhubarb, and 1/2 cup sugar to a quart jar. i put the jar in a cool, dark cupboard for two days to kickstart fermentation, i then moved the jar into the fridge for 14 days. i also like to shake things, so i think i probably turned the jar over a few times. or a hundred times.

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when ready, take the drinking vinegar out of the fridge and strain our the fruit. i took this lovely blurry picture where you can see the old rhubarb pieces in the sieve, and the beautiful colored shrub on the right. Sodastream should pay me for all the advertising i give them in these posts, but i digress – mix shrub and fizzy water together to taste and serve with ice.

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add vodka! i never did for some strange reason. so make me proud and add vodka! or gin.

shrubs.

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