( Originally Published Early 1900's )
1. VINEGAR—from Sugar.-Good brown sugar, 1/4 lb.; soft warm water, 1 gal. Keep same proportions for any amount you desire to make. Yeast, good brewer's, pt. or hop, home-made, 1 pt. strained for each 10 gals. Directions--Dissolve the sugar in a pail by pouring hot water upon it and stirring, or else put into the keg and shake thoroughly to dissolve it; then add the balance of water for the amount to be made, and add the yeast when the water is only warm. To scald yeast kills it. The kegs or bids. should never be more than % or 34 filled, as vinegar to make quickly must have a large surface to allow warm air to come in contact with the fluid. Put mosquito netting or coarse cheese cloth over the bung to keep out the flies and let the air in. If shaken daily it makes quicker—in from 2 to 4 weeks, according to the heat of the sun or the warmth of the room in which it is placed. A pt. to 1 qt. of shelled corn will do very well in place of yeast, as it has a great fermenting power; but after 3 weeks at most, if corn is used, the vinegar must be drawn off to get rid of the corn. If you have 1 gal. of good vinegar to put into each 5 being made, no yeast or corn need be used.
2. Vinegar, from Molasses.—Good molasses, 1 qt, to each gal. of warm, soft water. Make every way the same as No. 1.
3. Vinegar, from Sugar or Molasses, Hop Yeast and Corn.—Mrs. R. J. Simpson of Hedgeman, Kan., in answer to an inquiry in the Blade, "how to make vinegar," says: To 10 gal. of water take 10 lbs. of sugar, I gal. of hop yeast sponge, set and let get light as for bread, boil 1 gal. of corn till tender, when cool pour in an open keg or jar all together, and in 2 or 3 weeks you will have the best of vinegar. Shaking or moving around does not inure it at all; it never dies; keep covered."
Remarks-Here you see an open keg or jar is called for, knowing that air must come in contact with a large surface of the fluid to make quickly; but a keg or bbl. only % full, or a little more, gives a larger surface to the air, of course, laying on its side, and the bung only covered with open cloth or mosquito netting, keeps out the flies and dirt and allows the daily shaking, which also hastens its oxygenation, souring, by giving a new surface to the air at each shaking. It is also more cleanly, because less likely to have anything get into it. But remember where sponge yeast and corn are used, when the fluid has worked clear, in about 3 weeks, it should be poured off, the dregs and corn strained out, or otherwise got rid of, and the fluid returned and shaken daily till the vinegar is as sharp as desired. Another lady signing herself "M. A. M:" Mama, I suppose it means—gives the following plan of making:
Corn Vinegar.-"Cut off of the cob 1 pt. of corn, then take 1 pt. of brown sugar or molasses to 1 gal. of rain water; add the corn, put into a jar, cover with a cloth, set in the sun, and in 3 weeks you will have good vinegar. I have made it 5 years, and know it is good. Have cider vinegar, but like the corn vinegar best."
Cider Vinegar.—Pure cider vinegar is acknowledged to be the best that can be made. To make it quickly, a writer gives us the following plan, He says: "Expose a large surface of the cider to the action of the atmosphere; it will turn rapidly to vinegar; for instance, if the cider is put into buckets or tubs in the sun, and a mosquito netting is laid over the top of it so that the flies will not touch it, and shield it also from rain by boards, in 3 or 4 weeks you will have strong vinegar. The larger the surface exposed to the air, the sooner the fermentation will take place and vinegar be formed. Place a bucket of cider behind a cooking stove constantly in use, and you will soon have vinegar. Warmth and air are all that are needful."
Remarks—This would be impracticable except in small quantities, and in -warm summer weather. If this writer had said warmth, air and time are all that are needful to make vinegar out of cider, he would have covered the whole ground, for 'tis rather a slow process. Not much use to try to do any-thing more with cider the season it is made only, only to leave the bungs out of the bbl. to allow its first fermentation to proceed, or it is best to leave the bung out all the time, if the cider is to be made into vinegar. And those who desire to make it in quantities for sale, will do best, no doubt, to follow the French plan below described by the Maine Farmer, as follows:
" Old cider or vinegar barrels, if sound, are preferred to new ones, but if new they are washed with scalding water; boiling vinegar is next poured in and the bung closed and the barrel allowed to stand until its sides become thoroughly saturated with the vinegar. This requires from 1 to 3 days, according to the material of which the barrel is made. After this preparation it is filled ,about one-third with strong and pure cider vinegar and 2 gallons of cider. Every eighth day thereafter, 2 gallons of cider are added until the barrel is two-thirds full. In 14 days after the last two gallons are added the whole will have turned into vinegar; one-half of which is drawn off and the process of filling with cider begun again. In summer the oxygenation will go on in the sun, but in cool weather the liquid is kept where the heat can be maintained at about 80 degrees. By this process it takes a Iittle more than two months to produce vinegar."
Remarks.-You will understand this 16 gals. is produced in each bbl., so if a man is working 100 bbls. he makes 1,600 gals., or about 50 bbls. of 32 gals. each (which is a legal bbl.), every two months of the summer season; and if he is going to carry it on for a business, as a man does in this city (Toledo, O.), and has a suitable building, he can work 500 bbls. as well as 100. In summer,. free air is admitted by lowering and raising windows, and if he chooses, can make considerable in the colder months by keeping his room warm with stoves or furnace, if the demand justifies it. This gentleman tells me that. some old, pure cider vinegar, to mix with the newer cider, isfar preferable to yeast or any other ferment, which will be found to be a great aid, as mentioned in the close of the directions of No. 1; and if a larger amount than therm named is used, even 1 to 3, or the bbl. filled one-third full, as in the French plan above, it will make all the quicker. Quite an important point for those who may wish to manufacture vinegar of pure cider, in the cities or for city trade, is to have one or more large casks in the building, holding 1,000 gals. (Mr. Hine, of this city, before referred to, has two such), into which it is all placed, before sold, as it insures a greater uniformity of taste, from the large amounts always kept in these large tanks or casks. Mr. Hine's 1,000 gal. casks, in cheap times, cost him only $50 each, but he thinks they pay in giving this uniformity of taste; as without them the taste dependsupon the kind and quality of the apples from which the cider is made. A 3-story building is none too high, as, after the first working of the cider is over in the lower story or basement, it is pumped to the third, and after 6 months or so it is run into barrels in the next story below by means of rubber tube siphons, and then again into the large casks, when properly worked or having become vinegar fit for sale—it is the true way of making pure cider vinegar in large quantities.
Vinegar From Tomatoes.—It is claimed that ripe tomatoes furnish a juice, or cider, if you wish to call it such, that makes an excellent vinegar with-out the addition of sugar; but my own idea would be, that from 1/4 to 1/2 lb. of sugar would be required to each gal. to make excellent vinegar. With this addition, no doubt, it will make good vinegar; for with 3 or 4 lbs. to each gal. it will make a good wine, if a slight taste of the tomato, which it retains, is not objectionable.
Vinegar From Alcohol, or Proof Spirit, Strength Required.—It is recently claimed that to make vinegar with alcohol, or proof spirit, which is the cheapest—either should contain 80 per cent. of alcohol. It is necessary to use from 17 to 25 per cent. of it, i. e., 17 gals. of proof spirit with water to make 100 gals. makes good vinegar—this is about 1 to 6, while 25 per cent., or 1 to 4, makes extra strong. This can be made in the sun, or a warm place, by working with yeast, as other vinegars are made, or by putting it through what Is called the German process of filtering it through beech shavings, described in the U. S Dispensatory. But the plan of using any of the mineral acids in making vinegar is deleterious to health, and ought not to be done.
VINEGAR, SPICED—For Table Use, Mixed Pickles, etc.—People of late years have got into the habit of spicing vinegar highly for table use, as well as for various kinds of mixed pickles, and even for the common or 'cucumber pickles, and as it gives an extra relish, if nicely done, I will give one -of the best; then one with plain celery, and one of currie flavor, which can be prepared and bottled or jugged, always ready for use. For a highly spiced vinegar make as follows; but, if in any case the onions, garlics, or any of the spices are not desired from not liking their peculiarities, leave them out; or you may add half as much more of any spice you prefer to be most prominent in -the vinegar:
For each gallon of good cider vinegar, slice small garlics, 6; and small onions, 1 doz.; horse radish, 2 good sized roots, also sliced; bruised ginger root, -4- ozs. ; black pepper and allspice, unground, each 2 ozs. ; cloves, 20; cayenne peppers, 1 doz., or 3 or 4 medium sized red peppers; and mustard seed, 4 ors. ; -and if a yellow shade or color is desired, put in tumeric root, bruised, 1 oz.; but as this is only to color, I prefer it without. DIRECTIONS—Put all into a stone jar, place on the back of the stove, cover, and let steep, or keep hot 6 to 10 hours; then strain and bottle for use; or set away in the jar, closely covered, as you prefer, Suitable for cauliflower, cabbage, cucumbers, or any mixed pickle; or to use on the table, in place of common, plain vinegar, for which I like it very much,
Celery Vinegar.—Put 3 ozs. of celery seed into a quart bottle, and fill with good cider vinegar, or white wine vinegar. After a few days it is nice to flavor soups, or gravies, or to use in place of celery salt, upon meats, etc. The more seed used, up to 4 ors., makes the stronger flavor. Diluted alcohol, or brandy, will suit some persons better than the vinegar. Let them use either, as they like best.
Currie Vinegar.—Put currie powder (which see), 3 ozs. to each quart of good cider vinegar, and steep as spiced vinegar, above, then bottle, and add, as you like, of it to meat gravies, or sour pickles, etc.