Vinegar is made by the action of acetic acid bacteria on an alcoholic liquid. The most common and the strongest flavoured vinegar is malt vinegar which is based on beer, other types of vinegar are based on cider and red or white wine. Sometimes herbs and spices, such as tarragon, thyme and chillies, are bottled with a wine vinegar and their flavour permeates through the vinegar when it has matured.
Vinegar is one of the ingredients used in the making of FRENCH DRESSING, MAYONNAISE and other sauces. It is sometimes added to a marinade, which helps to give flavour to meat and fish, and is always used in pickles and chutneys, as it acts as a preservative.
Vinegar is also essential in the prepara-tion of dishes such as SOUSED HERRING and SOUSED MACKEREL. It is also used in cakes with bicarbonate of soda and the action of the two acts as a raising agent.