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Balsamic Vinaigrette

EloisaEloisa Raw Newbie

Raw or no?? I know some contain “cooked grape must (sp?)”, but I have one that just contains grape must—same thing?? Thanks!


  • 1sweetpea1sweetpea Raw Newbie

    Not raw. I’m so sorry. I absolutely love balsamic vinegar. I make my own vinaigrette with aged balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy, organic cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil mixed with a little flax, hemp or avocado oil, garlic and Nama Shoyu, which also isn’t raw. I’ve decided that I like it to much to abandon it in some fanatic quest to be 100% raw. I figure that if I’m eating better than 99% of society, I’m doing pretty well. If you love your balsamic too much to scrap it in your quest to be higher raw, keep it, but at least make your own vinaigrette. The bottled varieties generally use inferior oils and are high in sodium. You’ll like your homemade version even more, I suspect.

  • WinonaWinona Raw Newbie

    At my local farmer’s market, I buy locally made, raw, organic, fresh blueberry vinegar. It tastes similar to balsamic. Perhaps you can find the same! (I’m in upstate New York fyi).

  • EloisaEloisa Raw Newbie

    1sweetpea – you make your own with aged balsamic vinegar ( I meant vinegar when I said vinaigrett – same thing right??) So aren’t you just making your own adding other oils/flavors but still using the vinaigrett?? My bottle says its barrel aged or something like that. I don’t have it with me right now…

  • 1sweetpea1sweetpea Raw Newbie

    Vinaigrette is a term that describes a salad dressing made from oil and an acid, in this case, vinegar. The word, vinaigrette is NOT synonymous with vinegar. When I say I make my own vinaigrette, I mean that I mix oil, vinegar, garlic and salt or Nama Shoyu (and black pepper) to make a dressing for my salads. I thought that your original post was a question about bottled balsamic dressings. Regardless, I answered your question. Balsamic vinegar is made from a reduction of cooked grape juice, as is virtually all commercially produced vinegar. It is possible to buy raw apple cider vinegar, or some artisanal ones such as the one Winona suggested. The barrel aging of your balsamic vinegar is not the issue, though. It’s the boiling down of the juice to concentrate it that makes it a non-raw product. Also, a quick peek at my delicious 12-year aged bottle reveals that, in addition to wine vinegar and concentrated grape must, there is caramel colour added, along with sulphites—eek! This is most definitely not a raw product. You could make a decent raw substitute with lemon juice and dates or date syrup. Give it try. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

  • I completely agree with 1sweetpea. However, it’s funny this topic came up because I HAD to go to a regular restaurant yesterday for lunch with my boss. I ordered a salad and I hate salads with no dressing. The options they had were balsamic vinaigrette or a bunch of cream based dressings. I didn’t want to look too picky in front of my boss so I just ordered the balsamic vinaigrette, even though I knew it wasn’t raw. I used about half the amount they gave me, which might have been about a 2 tablespoons. Boy, was that ever a mistake. I felt so sick all day and evening!! I also had the worst gas and my stomach was churning. I now know to insist on olive oil and lemon for dressing at a restaurant. I’m now pretty scarred from balsamic vinegrette from restaurants. The strange thing is I make my own at home and the vinegar never bothers me? I’m sure the resturant version was processed and had random gross ingredients though.

  • 1sweetpea1sweetpea Raw Newbie

    Yeah. Restaurants buy the cheapest and largest quantities of salad dressings that they can find, most of which are vile. Look at the ingredient list on a standard issue bottle of balsamic vinaigrette at your grocery store. You’ll find all kinds of additives and preservatives, sugars, oils such as soybean and/or canola, even msg. Anything to make it taste better and last longer before spoiling. I hate bottled dressings, because they always taste really fake to me. There’s always some lingering aftertaste that is bitter and off to me. When I learned how easy it is to make a basic vinaigrette and its infinite variations, I’ll never go back. The exception, of course, is in restaurants. I usually ask for any dressing on the side, so that my salad doesn’t come floating in it, but also because I don’t necessarily expect to like the dressing.

  • RawKidChefRawKidChef Raw Newbie

    No, balsamic vinegar is not raw. Red wine, however, is available raw by Eden Foods, at health stores. It makes things like salads very tasty when mixed with olive oil. I used to love balsamic vinegar, it didn’t make that much of a difference for me but I could detect a a slight negative effect. It’s hard to describe exactly what. Either way I gravitate toward the red wine vinegar.

  • I have not been able to give up balsamic. After about 3 weeks into RF, I found out (!@#$ shock and horror @#$) that balsamic was not raw, I switched to lemon and tried some apple cider vinegar, but it is not getting me there... I have given up and fallen back on balsamic. I use the best that I can find, fine-grated cloves of garlic, dulse flakes - and the best olive oil that I can find.

  • 1sweetpea1sweetpea Raw Newbie

    I'm with you, derryckl. I haven't been very committed to raw lately, for a variety of reasons, but I try to be as raw as possible when eating at home. I will not give up my balsamic vinegar, though. It's just too darn good. Raw ACV and lemon juice are fine in dressings, but they're totally different from balsamic and simply not comparable. I'm interested to try the Eden brand red wine vinegar, though. Variety is a good thing. BTW, I'm also a lover of miso in dressings. I'm keeping it too, since I believe it to be a very healthy fermented, albeit cooked, food.

  • RawKidChefRawKidChef Raw Newbie

    I LOVE balsamic vinegar. But I like to stay as raw as I can. I'm with you when you say ACV doesn't do the trick but I've found raw red wine vinegar to be as close to balsamic as you can get. It has that sweet flavor that probably makes balsamic attractive.

  • ajchanterajchanter Raw Newbie

    Wow, thanks so much RawKidChef... I'll get my parents to try the wine thing!!... There addicted to balsamic vinegar!! :D

  • RawKidChefRawKidChef Raw Newbie

    You're welcome! Just be sure to mix it with olive oil as it's very strong by itself. I use that dressing in all my salads now :)

  • I have what may be a stupid question. I'm fairly new to raw (2 months), and I've seen "ACV" a lot lately. I've been trying to figure out what abbreviation it may be, but can't figure it out. Can someone please tell me what that is?

  • RawKidChefRawKidChef Raw Newbie

    Oh hehe sorry..yea..evergreen said it...apple cider vinegar. :)

  • evergreenevergreen Raw Master





    btw...here is a pretty close raw substitute for balsamic


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