Vinegratte is kind of...thick. WTF?
June 30, 2013 3:35 PM   Subscribe

I’m roasting some cauliflower, and the recipe I’m using has you make a vinegrette to drizzle on top during the roast. I mixed together EVOO & Balsamic Vinegar... I turned my back to stir the cauliflower and the vinegrette unexpectedly thickened. It's like a thick barbeque sauce consistency instead of suspended particles. What just happened?

I used 1/3 cup olive oil, 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, and a little salt, and whisked it up. And now it's really really thick.

Everything smelled okay when I mixed it together. But the vinegar has been around awhile. Could the vinegar have gone off?
posted by Caravantea to Food & Drink (6 answers total)
No, IME this just means you're doing emulsification right.
posted by clavicle at 4:12 PM on June 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

I'd say you got a really good ratio for emulsification. The salt may have had something to do with it, but rather, more the ratio of oil to vinegar.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 4:13 PM on June 30, 2013

Came into say you've made an emulsion too. When you shake/whisk/mix it, you separate the oil into small drops that are dispersed throughout the vinegar. That's an emulsion. It will eventually separate if left for long enough.
posted by Specklet at 4:16 PM on June 30, 2013

Vinegar does not go bad per se, though it does thicken as it gets older, which can affect your vinaigrette. Also how you mix the vinaigrette (by hand or blender or shaking it in a jar) can affect it - blender = thicker emulsification. Also, how cold it is can affect how thick it is (colder = thicker). You could try whisking in a splash of warmish water (just a little bit) to dilute it a bit if you want it runnier for your purposes, but it is ok to use as is.
posted by gudrun at 4:17 PM on June 30, 2013

Yup, emulsion. When you put it on hot cauliflower, it'll get very thin again from the heat.
posted by quince at 7:06 PM on June 30, 2013

Funny answers. Anyway, I teach cooking and the answer is balsamic is quite a bit thicker than any other vinegar due to its high sugar content. Just thin it out with a little water and you will be fine. FYI - vinegar never goes bad it is used as a preservative for many foods. And yes it would also thin out when poured on the warm cauliflower.
Other vinegars will not thicken this way.
posted by privatechef at 5:02 AM on July 1, 2013 [1 favorite]

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