Summer time is the perfect time to pickle that gorgeous fresh produce your garden or farmer’s market is, well, producing. While you can pickle vegetables pretty much any time of the year, the warmer months (especially late summer) are perfect to begin pickling your veggie (and even fruit!) harvest.
Pickling is super easy, and you can pickle just about anything that fits into a jar. From cucumbers (duh) to eggplant, cauliflower, asparagus, red onions and garlic, using a simple brine of just a few ingredients will take the flavors of these veggies to a whole new level.
Tip: Use super-fresh veggies for pickling. Anything bruised or past it’s prime is perfect for vegetable stock, but for pickling, fresh is best.
In A Pickle: A How-To Guide For Pickling Fresh Vegetables (and even fruit!)
Includes A Printable Guide!
How To Pickle:
First things first--Think about the flavor combos you're going with. Once you've decided, add the appropriate herbs and spices to the jar(s). There's no exact measurements here--put in as little or as much as you like, just bear in mind the more you add the stronger the taste!
Next, wash and clean the veggies. If necessary, peel and slice and/or blanch. Add them to your jar(s), allowing a 1/2" space between the veggies and the rim of the jar.
Make the brine: In a large saucepan, combine equal parts water and vinegar. For 2 pints of pickled vegetables, a cup to a cup and a half of each works fine. Add 1 tablespoon salt and 1 tablespoon sugar, which is optional, but does help to cut down on the acidity of the vinegar a bit.
Bring the brine to a boil, stirring until the salt and sugar dissolve. Turn off heat. And just like that, you've made a brine.
Next, pour the brine over the vegetables (it's perfectly fine for the brine to be super hot). Make sure to once again leave 1/2" space between the veggies/brine and the rim of the jar.
Gently tap the jar against the edge of your work surface to dissolve any air bubbles. Add more brine if necessary. Add your lid (and ring, if using one), and leave your pickled pot of pickled produce to cool down to room temp before refrigerating.
As tempting as it might be, don't dive into your pickle-y goodness for about 48-72 hours. You really want the veggies to soak up the brine and for all of the flavors to meld.
Check out this handy, printable guide to easy pickling:
Looking for recipes or more pickling ideas? Serious Eats has you covered. Here are 23 pickle recipes you're sure to love!
Do you enjoy pickling as much as I do? What are some of your favorite veggies or fruits to pickle? Let me know in the comments!
Stalk Us On Social Media!