Quick Pickled Veggies

We wait and wait all year for our gardens to mature and the farmers markets to yield summer’s biggest bounty and then all of sudden – it’s time!!  It only lasts a little while in our part of the country and we have to take advantage of all the fresh produce while we can.  When you have a ton of veggies, try making quick pickles for a twist on grilled, baked, broiled, fried and sautéed garden treats!  There’s endless possibilities and a super easy process for you to start from.  Below are three of my favorites – the ingredients are slightly different for each, but the process is exactly the same for all three.

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SWEET PICKLED ONIONS & RADISHES

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Large Sweet Onion Sliced
  • 8 Radishes – 1/4 Inch Slices
  • 1 1/2 Cups White Vinegar
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 1/2 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 2 Tsp Pickling Spices

GARLIC DILL PICKLES

Ingredients

  • 8 Small Cucumbers – 1/2 Inch Slices
  • 1 Cup White Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 Cups Water
  • 4 Large Cloves Garlic, Peeled & Slightly Crushed
  • 1 Small Bunch Fresh Dill
  • 1 Tsp Sugar
  • 1 Tbs Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes

PICKLED BANANA & SERRANO PEPPERS

Ingredients

  • 6 Banana Peppers – 1/2 Inch Slices
  • 8 Serrano Peppers – 1/2 Inch Slices
  • 1 1/2 Cups White Vinegar
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 2 Tsp Sugar
  • 1 Tbs Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tsp Pickling Spices

Instructions (For All 3 Varieties)

  • Place sliced vegetables into a wide-mouth quart-size canning jar or similar container.
  • In a small saucepan, combine remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.  Salt and sugar should be dissolved and you’ll smell the spices.
  • Allow mixture to cool slightly – about 10 minutes.  Then pour mixture over veggies in the jar.
  • If there is not enough liquid to cover veggies, add a few ice cubes to fill the rest of the space.  It will also help with the cooling process.
  • Allow jars to cool for 20 minutes.  Then screw on lids and place in the refridgerator for at least 24 hours.
  • Eat and enjoy for up to two weeks.

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Again, this process is basic and easy to execute.  You can buy pickling spice in several markets, but I love the mixture from Penzey’s Spices.  Click on the link to check it out along with their huge selection.  Can’t find pickling spice?  Try using a combination of bay leaf, mustard seed, coriander seed, cinnamon, allspice, star anise, peppercorns, and cardamom.  As I said before, you can use all kinds of flavor combinations depending on your preference.  Some of you will probably want more salt in each of these recipes, but give it a try and let me know how it goes.

These recipes are great for veggies to top your salads, on sandwiches or as accompaniments to a great charcuterie and cheese plate.  Heck, just snack on them with a few cold beers – how could you go wrong??  Good luck, enjoy summer’s bounty and happy pickling!!

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