The most delicious summer drink mix!
What is an herbal shrub?
Shrubs are a mixture of fruit, vinegar & sugar. They are an old way of preserving the summer fruits to enjoy in the off season. Shrubs were also quite popular during the prohibition period due to their zingy and refreshing nature.
How do you use a shrub?
Once you start concocting with herbal shrubs, there is no going back. The simplest way to enjoy an herbal shrub is to mix with soda water on ice. This makes for a delicious herbal soda. You can concoct herbal cocktails, sangrias, desert syrups and more with your shrub!
How to Make Shrub
There are various methods for making an herbal shrub. The method I am showing you in this recipe is the slow method without heat or refrigeration. This method is best for soft fruits such as; peaches, strawberries, blueberries, pears, plums - though you can experiment and make other fruits work like the currants in this recipe. You can try what fruit you have access to, so long as you follow the 1:1 ratio, fruit and sugar followed by equal parts apple cider vinegar.
*Tip* Freeze your fruit and then thaw to make the recipe. This helps break down the walls of the fruit and kick start the juicy process.
1 cup red currants
1 cup cane sugar
1 cup apple cider vinegar
Measure 1 cup of red currants and pour into a bowl.
Mix 1 cup of cane sugar with fruit.
Cover with tea-towel and place on the counter.
You will notice the mixture is getting juicy. Mix and mash currant & sugar mixture. (Make sure you mash those berries! The currants have tough skin and need some encouragement)
Repeat steps from Day 2.
Strain syrup and measure.
Measure an equal amount of apple cider vinegar.
Add ¾ of the apple cider vinegar to the syrup.
Mix and taste.
If it is too sweet, add more apple cider vinegar.
Bottle, label and store in a cupboard or fridge. (I prefer to store in the fridge to maintain shelf life) Your shrub should last 8-10 months in the fridge.
Other recipe ideas:
Peach + Ginger
Strawberries + Rhubarb
Strawberries + Basil
Plum + Bergamot
Have fun! I would love to see your shrub creations. Tag me on Instagram, @bluejaybotanicals