top of page

Strawberry Basil Shrub

Year of honeys no. 10 - We've been enjoying strawberries for the last few weeks as a treat while we start revving up for spring & getting back into the swing of having local produce. Strawberry & basil is a classic flavor combo so I decided to try out an oxymel/shrub using champagne vinegar. I'm looking forward to adding this with some olive oil to a salad!

If you're new to vinegar honey infusions, it's pretty simple. The terms oxymel & shrub get used interchangeably in many resources. The main difference is that an oxymel is typically considered a medicinal vinegar honey while shrubs are a fruit (especially berry) based culinary vinegar honey.

To make you’ll need:

~ 6-8 fresh basil leaves

~ 3-5 strawberries, quartered

~ 2 oz champagne vinegar

~ local raw honey

~ 8 oz (half pint) sterile jar for marrying & storage

Remove green strawberry tops & quarter berries. Place in jar loosely filling halfway. Lightly bruise basil leaves & add to jar. Add 2 oz of vinegar. The vinegar should just about cover the berries & basil. Add enough honey to fill the jar up to the neck (threads). Gently stir to blend & work out air pockets. Use a plastic lid or put parchment/wax paper between lid & jar. The acidity of vinegar will cause metal to corrode.

Give the jar a shake once a day to keep mixed & all bits submerged. Let steep for a few days & then start tasting. When the flavors are to your liking, strain & enjoy! Using fresh ingredients adds moisture, so sticking this in the fridge once it's done infusing will lengthen the shelf life. I usually infuse for about a week.

Ways to use: Take by spoon or shot. Mix with teas, carbonated water/tonic, cocktails. Use as a salad dressing or marinade.

Some benefits of strawberry: excellent source of vitamin C and manganese. It also contains folate (vitamin B9) and potassium. They are rich in antioxidants that support heart health & blood sugar control (see more here). Strawberries are a good source of dietary fibers, which are good for gut bacteria growth & improving digestion. While strawberries are considered well tolerated, allergy is common in children & individuals sensitive to birch & apples.

Basil: good source of vitamin K. Rich in antioxidants & anti-inflammatory properties. According to many articles on PubMed it may help with - reduced memory loss from stress & aging; reduce depression due to chronic stress; reduce stroke damage & support recovery; improve fasting blood sugar & cholesterol; reduce blood pressure in people with hypertension; increase mental alertness when inhaled as aromatherapy; inhibit growth of bacteria that causes dental decay; provide an alternative to antibiotics; and repel insects.

bottom of page