A Dream Dessert Features the Delicate Candy-Like Flavors of Elderberry and Cherry, Inside a Cookie!Appetizers / November 1, 2021
Here’s another confession for all my crazy and loyal followers: Food is not silent. It has a clear and authentic voice that actually speaks. It is screaming inspiration to you all the time. You’re busy checking with your friends about recipe combinations and culling through cookbooks or blogs for direction. And yet all you need are your taste buds. In the case of this elegantly infused Elderberry Balsamic Vinegar, one need only to close one’s eyes. Press the vinegar thoughtfully between your teeth and tongue. Take it to the back of your mouth and let it coat your tongue. Now pause and breathe. Wow! Intense! Right?
When I tasted this Olive This! Elderberry Balsamic Vinegar, I was transported to a place where soft flowers blend with tart cherries. A place where an herbal hint of berry was almost perfume-like but still sweet like candy with just the right tartness. After I smacked my lips and opened my eyes? Well, all I could think of was making this into a dessert. I could tell that it had qualities like vanilla, but with a depth that was screaming to be featured as a main flavor.
After finding one of my favorite soft sugar cookie recipes, one that I knew would yield a good chew but not crumble, I decided a bit of this balsamic nectar would be just as much at home in the batter as in the lovely icing I was planning to create to sandwich them together. We add other oils to batters like lemon oil, almond oil, and so forth. Surely this elderberry would work as well!
On another note, if you research Elderberry trees you find it has all kinds of health benefits. It has a dark berry fruit that is often used for jam. So right there I knew I was right. My food was blabbering away with genius. If you’re still a little unsure of my logic about adding this to a dessert, remember we add balsamic to strawberries and it’s divine!
So, what makes a balsamic vinegar a balsamic? All of them are derived from a thousand-year-old process developed around the area of Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy. Traditional balsamic vinegar is made from “grape must” which is the juice from freshly pressed grapes, aged for a minimum of 12 years in a series of successively smaller wooden barrels, each made from a different type of wood — oak, juniper, mulberry, ash, cherry, and chestnut. Because the wood is porous the vinegar loses moisture over time, and becomes more concentrated, eventually reaching a syrupy consistency. Olive This! balsamics are then infused with plant extracts to produce the lovely flavors you enjoy.
So back to the cookies. Oh, how gorgeous are they? And the icing with the hint of sophisticated cherry, was really more delicious than I expected. I truly can’t wait for you to try them. The perfect dessert to bring to your Thanksgiving Feast. They will freeze beautifully and perhaps, in the end, you too will believe in the voices of your food calling you to greatness!