February 28, 2014

Serrano Pickled Brussels Sprouts


Ingredients:
1 1/2 lb Brussels sprouts, stem and loose leaves removed
1 serrano pepper, halved and sliced into 1/4 inch chunks
2-3 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
1 teaspoon celery flakes
1 teaspoon dill seed
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups white vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons pickling salt


Directions:
Bring the water, vinegar and salt to a boil. Prep the lids/jars. Evenly divide all of the spices and peppers between 2 or 3 pint jars. Add the Brussels sprouts, leaving 1/4 inch headroom.

Pour in the vinegar mixture, still leaving that 1/4 inch headroom. Close the jars and process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath. Allow to sit at least 1 week before eating.

Yield: 2-3 pints (depending on the size of the Brussels sprouts)



Note: A great source for canning information is the Blue Book guide to preserving. I highly recommend it for learning how to can. Here is a bunch of other canning books and equipment I find useful.



My thoughts:
I really miss canning in the winter. I was writing my latest cookbook during the heart of citrus season and didn't get a chance to make marmalade. I thought I might have to wait until spring to can but when I received these green heritage Ball jars, I knew I had to make something in them! I wanted to make something that would look pretty in the jars (vain!) so when I ended up with a bunch of leftover Brussels sprouts, I thought they'd be perfect to pickle. I'd never had a pickled Brussels sprout before, but that didn't stop me, a lot of my pickling has been of fruit I haven't had pickled before and it has all been delicious. I love sauerkraut so it only stands to reason that I'd love pickled Brussels sprouts as well. I had some serrano peppers so I popped one in and to mellow it out, I added some celery and dill flavors. The result? A spicy, savory bite that a pickle or sauerkraut fan would love. Try them on a cheese plate.

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