WINNER OF THE JANE GRIGSON TRUST AWARD, 2018

“This book is a gem – a guide as well as an inspiration, that gives a thrilling insight into the dazzlingly varied, glorious and intriguing but still hardly known world of vinegars.”
— Claudia Roden

Published March 2019 by Bloomsbury Absolute

For press contact Fiona Smith: fiona@smithandbaxter.co.uk

 

REACTION TO ‘THE VINEGAR CUPBOARD’:

“In The Vinegar Cupboard, Angela Clutton has given us everything you ever needed to know about this vital ingredient for good cooking. Her recipes are from every corner of the world and this book belongs in every professional chef's and any serious cook's library.” - Ken Hom

“What the emphasis on vinegar as an ingredient really does here is point up the importance of balance in cooking… I have my eye on so many of the recipes in this book” - Nigella Lawson (full review on nigella.com)

“The research in this is just astonishing. It’s written with such knowledge and enthusiasm and the recipes look terrific. If you care about flavour you’ll love this book” - Diana Henry

Such an interesting read.” - Tom Kerridge

“Such an elegant book and essential reading if you are a food nerd like me” - Russell Norman

“The Vinegar Cupboard is destined to become a classic” - Felicity Cloake

“An exceptional, deeply researched, carefully written and joyfully good read about the vast and fascinating world of an essential - and for me little known - ingredient. It whips you along like a good TV series; navigating history, science, alchemy and the globe with ease; and Angela is a bloody good writer.” - Rachel Roddy

“Prepare to have a new foodie fascination.” - Crumbs magazine

“Fascinating cookbook” - Melissa Hemsley

“What an amazing book” - Olia Hercules

“The Vinegar Cupboard is an authoritative compendium on the history, production and benefits of a broad spectrum of vinegars from around the world, interspersed with recipes demonstrating how they can be used in dishes both savoury and sweet” - Sunday Times

“For the ingredient geek. Clutton’s authoritative homage to an often overlooked ingredient is scholarly yet practical. As well as looking at vinegar from a historical and scientific points of view, she also analyses the varied flavour profiles to be found among the world’s magnificent variety of styles. There are plenty of recipes too - from soused fresh sardines with agrodolce onions to sticky pork ribs marinated in Chinese black vinegar.” - Waitrose ‘Weekend’

“Incredibly informative and truly fascinating book. A must for all keen cooks.” - Gill Meller

“A fascinating read with gorgeous recipes” - delicious magazine ‘Hot New Cookbooks’ ( full review in March 19 issue)

“Vinegar is an overlooked ingredient that most of us just aren’t making the most of. The Vinegar Cupboard will teach you how to use this underrated and very old acidic ingredient to enhance your cooking, as well as highlighting the forgotten health benefits” - Independent, IndyEats (plus review)

“A reference point for years to come - Ed Smith (full review)

“The Vinegar Cupboard sees [Angela] smash the perception that vinegar is a one-note, generic pantry item, and explore its history, uses and culinary possibilities.” - Ella Walker, Press Association

“The publication of The Vinegar Cupboard could not be more timely….a bible of the history and science behind the kitchen staple…thoroughly recommend it to anyone who wishes to expand their knowledge of this fascinating ingredient…will be helpful for any cook” - Caterer magazine (full review here)

“The global nature of the tale is striking.” - TLS (review)

“Expand your vinegar collection and you’ll expand your joy of cooking” - BBC Good Food magazine, May 19 issue Cookbook Challenge

 

‘Think what a poem a salad would be when dressed with primrose vinegar...’

The above line, from Florence White’s classic 1930’s cookbook, Good Things in England is what first led me down the rabbit hole of vinegar discovery.

It piqued my interest because at that time – maybe ten years ago after first reading it as I sit here writing this – flower vinegars were not often found. It got me thinking that in the many eighteenth- and nineteenth-century cookbooks I am happy to have in my collection, there are plenty of vinegar recipes. But in later books, all that stops, and vinegar (in British cookbooks, anyway) is referred to much more generically. That in turn got me wondering about just what we were missing.

The answer has turned out to be: we were missing a lot.

My vinegar collection has since grown in size and diversity and is now fundamental to how I cook. I know it isn’t just me who has got more into vinegar. It has been exciting to feel wider interest in vinegars growing at the same time as my own. The range of vinegars generally available to buy is expanding rapidly. It is not hard now to find fruit, herb, sherry, cider, malt, rice, balsamic and many types of red and white wine vinegars – from Rioja through to champagne – on store shelves.

I wonder how much the upsurge in interest in vinegar is the result of consumer tastes swinging away from sweet towards sour? How much is it to do with our widening interest in the provenance of food, with us wanting to know more about an ingredient and how it is made? Maybe it is on the back of the trend for fermenting, which is at the very heart of vinegar-making. With such an interest in gut health and fermented foods, is now the perfect time for a fresh look at the benefits of vinegar, too?

Most exciting of all to me as a cook is that I feel there is a growing interest in vinegars because of the role of acidity in cooking. I hope that by demonstrating the many great ways in which vinegars can be used to balance and bring flavour,The Vinegar Cupboard will enable even more modern cooks to make the most of this ancient ingredient.

In this book you will find the stories behind world vinegars, interwoven with recipes for using them. What I want these recipes to show is how the vinegars can be used interchangeably for varying impact and deliciousness. There is a flow between the vinegars, in their respective colour, density, acidity, flavour, aroma and culinary use. I would absolutely hate it if anyone thought a recipe could not be made because they did not have the ‘right’ vinegar. There are always options. And not only the options I give. As vinegar understanding grows, so does the confidence and awareness of switching vinegars round.

My hope with this book is that as you read about each vinegar, you will feel as if you have it in your hand – and then you will want to go out and find it so you can use it in your cooking. I honestly don’t expect everyone to have a vinegar cupboard, but I’d like to think this book might get you pondering a vinegar shelf at least...