If you happen to grow your own vegetables, pickling is a great way to enjoy the flavors of your bounty year-round. Sometimes I just crave the snap and crunch of raw pickled vegetables, that acidic sweet-sourness that makes every taco, burger or sandwich that much better. In April, I'll lay out all the veggies, spices and herbs, put on a great album and start jarring. It's a great way to extend the life of my favorite foods and even ensure little food waste between grocery runs.

Best part, it's so simple! Here's what you will need.

  • Mason jar or any repurposed glass jarĀ 
  • A good source of filtered water
  • Kosher salt
  • Sugar optional
  • Vinegar (white vinegar, apple cider, white wine, and rice vinegar all work well)
  • Fresh herbs (dill, thyme, oregano, and rosemary hold up well)
  • Dried herbs (thyme, dill, rosemary, or oregano)
  • Garlic cloves
  • Fresh ginger
  • Whole spices (mustard seed, coriander, peppercorns, red pepper flakes)
  • Ground spices (turmeric or smoked paprika are great for both color and flavor)

Cut your veggies of choice to the desired shape and size. Carrots, beets, cucumbers, green beans, red onion, cabbage, cherry tomatoes, and squash are great selections. Then get creative with the spices and herbs that accompany the veggies. Add equal parts vinegar and water, tablespoon of salt, and tablespoon of sugar (optional) to a saucepan and bring to a boil (measurement depends on the size of your jar). Pour the brine over the vegetables, filling each jar to 1/2 inch from the top. Remove air bubbles, seal the jar and let cool at room temperature. The veggies will get tastier as they age. Try to avoid opening within the first 2 days.

 

Vanessa Elvira

Feeding Tampa Bay | Mission Storyteller