Pickled peppers

We’ve actually made several batches of pickled jalapeños now, but I’ve been horribly remiss in not posting the recipe sooner. There are a few recipes of ours, particularly the tortilla chicken, that use pickled jalapeño, and it seemed like a no-brainer to try our hand at pickling them ourselves. Plus, we were so bemused at the thought of making our own “peck of pickled peppers”; mind you, I did discover that the traditional unit “peck” is actually 8 quarts. We’ll just have to quadruple the recipe then! 

Recipe

from The Joy of Pickling
Makes 4 pints

8 small garlic cloves
8 whole allspice berries
16 whole black peppercorns
2 small Mediterranean bay leaves, torn in half
2 pounds small, fleshy fresh hot peppers, each slit twice lengthwise, stems trimmed to about 1/4″
2 cups cider vinegar, white wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar
2 cups water
4 tsp pickling salt
1/4 cup olive oil

Divid the garlic, allspice, peppercorns and pieces of bay leaf among 4 pint mason jars. Add the hot peppers. In a saucepan, bring vinegar, water and salt to a boil. Pour the hot liquid over the peppers, leaving slightly more than 1/2″ headspace, and then pour 1 tbsp olive oil into each jar. Close the jars with two-piece caps. Process the jars for 10 minutes in a boiling-water bath. Store cooled jars in cool, dry dark place for at least 3 weeks before eating the peppers. Once open, store it in the refrigerator.

Musings

A few notes on preparation: For a couple of the jars, David added twice as many garlic cloves (not surprisingly).

3 weeks later…they have a great flavour, just the right amount of heat. A touch of sweetness from the cider vinegar makes for a lovely garnish on many of our dishes. David noted that the peppers are a bit soft. Not sure how to crisp them up, although I understand including grape or sour cherry leaves can help keep dill pickles firm, so perhaps they can be used here as well. They also made a fun Christmas gift, owing to their appropriately festive colours (and tastiness!).

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