Monday, April 4, 2011

Preserving with Dr. Monkey (or Pickling my way on the shining path to culinary freedom here in my urban homestead)

Today's episode: pickled jalapenos with garlic.

I've been wanting to try pickling ever since I bought that food preservation book the other day, so when I noticed a local grocery store had big ol' fat jalapenos on sale for .99 a pound, I sprang into action. The recipe for pickling chili peppers in the book said it would make 4 pints of finished product, and I've learned the hard way it's always better to have more sterilized jars ready if and when you need them, I put 7 jars and lids in my water bath canner pot and filled it with water and left it to boil.

Next I washed and laid out my peppers:

I like the heat from jalapenos but I'm not crazy about heat that overwhelms everything else, so I de-seeded and I cut out most of the ribs from the peppers. Then I sliced them lengthwise:
Next up I peeled and sliced about 8 medium sized cloves of garlic:
My jars had been in the sterilizing water bath for about 25 minutes so I put my pickling solution on to boil. This solution is three cups of distilled white vinegar, two cups water, 2 tablespoons of sugar, two tablespoons of salt (and I used canning and pickling salt which I bought last year to use in my canned tomatoes and my homemade canned tomato sauce).
When the pickling solution (aka brine) came to a boil I took it off the burner. I then took my jars and lids out of the boiling water bath and I filled up as many jars with pepper and garlic slices as I could. Then I ladled the brine over them making sure that the contents of each jar was covered by the brine. Then I put lids on the jars and I tightened them and put them back into the water bath for fifteen minutes. When that fifteen minutes was up I let them sit for five more minutes in the water after I took the pot off the burner.

And here's what my finished product looks like:
As you can see I only got three jars out of two pounds of peppers. I could have gotten more if I had not de-seeded the peppers I guess. But the recipe does say to pack whatever you're pickling tightly into your jars and to then pour the brine in.

Next time I do this I'll cut de-seed the peppers but I won't cut them in to the long thin strips, I'll cut them into rings. I'll also use three or four pounds of peppers, or perhaps more, and I'll adjust the brine solution accordingly. Actually what I'll do is I'll double the brine solution and cut up about eight to nine pounds of peppers.

The book says to let whatever you pickle stay in the sealed jar for at least two weeks, so in a few weeks I'll open a jar and let you know what these peppers taste like.


Room Mom Helper said...

I can't believe you packed a peck of pickled peppers.

Dr. Monkey Hussein Monkerstein said...

What's up Ubie.

Gregory said...

Rings, mon, it's the only way to jala your peno

gmb said...

Color me impressed. Learning how to pickle stuff in on my long list of things to try.