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Week 5 In the Kitchen

June 25, 2010

Quick recap of what went into your boxes…

Mesclun Salad Mix
Yukon Gold & Banana Fingerling Potatoes
Yaya and Purple Haze Carrots
Marketmore & Mini White Cucumbers
French Shallots
Soleil & Jade Bush Beans
Flash Collard Greens

This week, yer’ll getting a pickle recipe.  Why? you ask… because four of the 6 items in your bag taste delicious as pickles. 

Let’s get one thing clear…a pickle doesn’t have to be a cucumber to be considered a pickle.  Think of it more as a verb – the act of pickling… preserving in brine.  With so many vegetables being picked and so little time to eat it all, pickling becomes a great way to get the most of a harvest.  Last week, I made pickles out of radishes, carrots, zucchini, onions, shallots, and … well cucumbers of course.  So far, they’re delicious.

Here is a siiiiiimple way to make your own.  Use this as your base and please, get carried away with your pickle making… it will be more fun.

Peeled and cut vegetables (into sizes and shapes that fit into mason jars)
-1 cup of water
-2/3 cup of vinegar (I love rice wine vinegar, but white vinegar is classic and apple cider vinegar makes for an interesting flavor)
-1/2 cup sugar (this makes a sweeter pickle… add less if your prefer)
-2 1/2 tsp of kosher salt (kosher or pickling salt is key here…most other salts will turn the liquid cloudy)
-Your Imagination

Sterilize your jars in boiling water or put them in a hot oven for 10 minutes or so… Dissolve your sugar and salt into the vinegar and water on a stovetop.  Meanwhile, arrange your vegetables into the jars while adding whatever spices, herbs, and flavorings you’d like.  A great combination is dried chillis, garlic cloves, coriander seeds, mustard seed, and dill with sliced cucumbers.  You could also put cinnamon sticks with a cider vinegar pickle to make apple-cinnamon pickles.  Tarragon pickles would be delicious infusing a clean white wine vinegar with black peppercorns, mustard seed, and half of the sugar.  You see where i’m going here?  Anyways, pack your vegetables in the clean mason jars with whatever flavors you want.  Pour the hot liquid over the vegetables until almost full and seal each jar immediately while the liquid is hot.  You can choose to process your jars at this point by submerging them in a HUGE pot of simmering water or you can leave them as is.  Processing the jars will give them a considerably longer shelf life, but they will also soften your vegetables by cooking them and destroying the crunchy pickle texture.  I chose to not process mine – i expect them to last in their jars for a couple of months.  Cucumbers are obviously great to pickle, but don’t be afraid to try other items like carrots, bush beans, garlic, shallots … Pickles can be eaten whenever you want, but I would wait at least 2 days

Enjoy your week!

B&G

Here are a couple pictures of our finished products.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. June 29, 2010 8:46 am

    I am so impressed with you guys! Really, this is fabulous. Glad that the veggies are coming along, I think that the praying mantis were an awesome idea. And your recipes and the pictures of your recipes are beautiful. Way to go, you are doing great!

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