Too Many Veggies?: Pickle 'em!
I am so lucky that I have a husband that not only loves to cook, but he’s actually pretty darn good at it! Because we both love to spend time in the kitchen, we sometimes have to “reserve” time so that we can each do things at our own pace and style without any comments from the peanut gallery! I tend to be a much messier cook leaving pots, pans and bowls on the counter as I drift from one recipe to the next. I tend to wait until the very end to clean everything up. I use the excuse that I don’t want to mess up my flow! Jesse is just the opposite, he cleans as he goes and would never leave even the smallest utensil dirty before he’s on to the next dish. He loves that at the end of his “shift” in the kitchen, he doesn’t have mounds of dishes to clean and put away. Now that I think about it, maybe this is a better approach!
One of my family’s very favorite things that Jesse makes is his pickled veggies. I can’t remember the last time we bought an actual jar at a market. These babies are not only great in sandwiches, they’re delicious as a side dish, on an antipasto platter, diced up and thrown into an omelet, tossed with a salad…and our kids love them in their school lunches! Instead of being limp and overly-pickled, they retain their crunch and pack a great burst of flavor. They won’t disappoint!
Jesse’s Pickled Veggie Recipe:
You can use just about any veggie you have on hand. Some of our favorites are:
English Cucumbers, Radishes, Onions, Celery, Cabbage, Green Beans, Jalapeno Peppers, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Asparagus
Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
5-6 x 12 oz Mason jars with lids
About 2 pounds of pickling veggies
4 cups water
2 cups rice wine vinegar
2 TBSP sea salt
1 tsp raw organic sugar
big bunch of dill (optional, but so tasty!)
1 head of garlic skins removed, cloves smashed or thinly sliced (less if its a strong garlic)
1-2 TBSP pepper corns
1 TBSP mustard seeds
1 TBSP coriander seeds
1. Trim ends from cucumbers and slice into long spears. Fit into 2 (16-oz. glass jar along with garlic, dill, peppercorns and coriander seeds)
2. Make a brine: in a medium saucepan, combine water, rice vinegar, and sea salt and sugar. Bring to a boil, stir until salt and sugar are dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Pour over cucumbers, seal jar, and shake. Let cool completely on the counter, then refrigerate until cold.
3. Try to wait at least 90 minutes to eat the pickles However, the longer you can wait (24 hours), the better flavor they’ll have. These will store in the fridge for about 2 months, but will start to lose their crunch after that.
Things to note:
They need to be refrigerated! They are not shelf-stable. You are using Mason jars, not canning jars!
Because there isn’t a whole lot of vinegar in this recipe, it helps the veggies keep their bright, happy, vibrant colors.
Experiment with flavors that your family loves! Don’t just add in what we like. Think outside the pickle jar!
These make wonderul host/hostess gifts! Just make sure your lucky recipient knows to put them in the fridge.
What better way to use up your bounty of vegetables from your backyard garden. These veggies will be delicious long after their growing season.