Thursday, July 5, 2012

Pickling Right Along

Also adapted from Canning For a New Generation come the not-too-sweet bread and butter zucchini pickles.  She uses ginger in her recipe, but I didn't have any.  It sounds super good, but I couldn't wait so I did without.  I also added a little more sugar (but not much) and a little less turmeric (because I ran out).   One jar didn't seal, so, unlike the turnips, I can assure you with all certainty that these pickles are delicious.  They go perfectly with a little rye bread and Dancing Fern cheese.  And, they're made from zucchini.

Bread and Butter Zucchini Pickles
makes about 6 pints
takes 2 days, or one very long day (8 hr-overnight ice bath)

  • 4 pounds zucchini, washed and beheaded
  • 1 pound sweet onions, peeled and halved
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon kosher or pickling salt 
  • 2 Tablespoons whole coriander seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon whole yellow mustard seed
  • 2 teaspoons crushed pepper (or 1 teaspoon minced dried cayenne)
  • 6 cups cider vinegar (5% acidity)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • (6 rounds fresh ginger if you have it)
Cut zucchini into 1/4 inch rounds.  Thinly slice onions.  Place together in a large bowl and toss with 1/4 cup of salt.  Cover with a healthy layer of ice cubes and let sit in the refrigerator 8 hours, or overnight.  Pull out any unmelted ice cubes, drain, rinse well, and drain again.  Toss with coriander seed and pepper flakes, set aside.  

Sterilize clean jars in a canning pot of boiling water, and let jars sit in warm water while preparing the vinegar.
Place new jar lids in a heat-proof bowl and pour boiling water from the pot over them- also leave in water til needed.

Combine vinegar, water, sugar, turmeric, and 1 T salt in a pot.  Bring to a boil.  Drain the jars and gently stuff the zucchini in, being sure not to pack too tightly.  If using ginger, throw a slice in the bottom of each jar first.  Carefully ladle or pour vinegar into each jar, leaving about 1/2 inch headspace.  Run a clean chopstick around the side of each jar to remove large air bubbles- the zucchini tend to fold up against the sides and trap air in them.  Screw the lids on well, but not too well (til "finger tight"), and process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.  Place on a dry towel and don't move jars for 12 hours.  Check to make sure all are sealed (buttons on top will be popped down), and store in a cool dry place.  They can be eaten after 3 weeks, although I tried my unsealed jar after 1 week and they were still amazing.

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