This April is the one-year anniversary of the San Diego Food Swap, a fun foodie event that I organize locally. It’s a great way to meet great cooks, practice your cooking skills, and get rid of surplus in your preserving pantry. This month I decided to make a few different pickles.
I’ve been thinking for a while that I need to step up my garlic game. Sure, roasted and even smoked whole heads of garlic are tiny blobs of heaven, but what about pickling them for extra punch? Preserved and Pickled has this delicious one, and I adapted it with a little extra white vinegar.
Pickled Garlic Cloves
(Try to keep the cloves whole, but trim off the hard ends.)
- 2 Cups White Vinegar
- ¼ Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- ¼ Cup Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Bay Leaf
- ½ Teaspoon Coriander Seeds
- ½ Teaspoon Mixed Peppercorns
- 2-3 Small Dried Red Chiles
Try to keep the cloves whole, but it’s OK if they break a little. Place all of the ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for about 5 minutes. Then fill sterilized mason jars and seal in a hot water bath for about 10-15 minutes.
I also did a version of my friend Belinda’s pickled red onions, which are a zingy compliment to pretty much any sandwich, wrap or burger. I added a bay leaf and a little more sugar.
I think my favorite of these are the pickled some cremini mushrooms. Knit and Nosh posted a fantastic recipe for these cheese plate darlings, and once again, I take a great recipe and make it my own with a little more spice — I used jalapeño instead of bell pepper and chili flakes, and added a little extra red onion.
Pickled Cremini Mushrooms
(Try these on your next cheese plate!)
- 1 pound cremini mushrooms, washed and cut into quarters
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup diced jalapeño
- 1/2 cup onion, sliced
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon peppercorn
Quarter (or halve the smaller) mushrooms, and dice the peppers and onions. Add to a pot with the vinegar, salt, and water, and simmer for about 5 minutes. Pour into sterilized jars with peppercorns, and seal in a hot water bath for 10 minutes to seal.
I found this fantastic pickled strawberry recipe on The Daily Meal, and adapted it with different spices (star anise and a little coriander).
Spicy Strawberry Pickles
(This is a recipe for one big jar; adapt as necessary.)
- 6-7 strawberries, stems removed
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 sliced or halved jalapeño or serrano pepper
- ½ teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1/4 teaspoon whole coriander
Slice or halve the strawberries and place into sterilized mason jar(s). Add the coriander, pepper and salt, while bringing the vinegar and sugar to a boil in a saucepan. Pour the hot brine into the jar(s) and place the two-piece lid. Give it at least three days to get to its full pickle flavor. Keep refrigerated.