Spring Pickling | WYPR

Spring Pickling

May 9, 2017

Credit mellow-stuff mie/flickr

As so often happens we go to the market and we feel swamped with all the produce available.  You take home a groaning market basked filled with fresh Maryland produce, and you quickly realize you can't eat it all, all at once.  But Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Schola Cooking School has some ideas about keeping that good spring produce.

Pickling is most often associated with the late summer or early fall, when we want to preserve the abundance of the harvest.  But there's no reason pickling can't go on all year long.  Jerry distinguishes between a fast pickle, accomplished in 30 minutes or less, and a slow pickle, which involves simmering your produce in the pickling liquid, and then canning it.

Click on the picture for some classic slow pickle recipes that Jerry has tried and likes.

Asparagus with Tarragon & Shallots

Ingredients

1 ½ cups champagne vinegar

1 cup water

¼ cup sugar

2 tablespoons kosher salt

5 sprigs fresh tarragon

1 large shallot, thickly sliced

1 pound asparagus, woody ends trimmed

In a medium saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring, until solids are dissolved. Remove from heat and add tarragon and shallot. Let stand 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, arrange asparagus in a tall 24oz. Ball wide mouth canning jar. Pour brine on top. It should be enough to cover the asparagus. If not make up a small amount of 1:1 water to champagne vinegar and add just enough to submerge the asparagus. Refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Ramps with Juniper & Black Peppercorns

Ingredients

1 ½ cups champagne vinegar

1 cup water

¼ cup sugar

2 tablespoons kosher salt

5 juniper berries

1 tablespoon black peppercorns.

1 pound ramps, green leaves cut off (quickly blanche the leaves and use them in place of basil in your favorite pesto recipe)

In a medium saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring, until solids are dissolved. Add the juniper and black pepper and boil for an additional 2 minutes. Add the ramps and boil for an additional 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand 5 minutes. Place the ramps and brine in a canning jar and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Spicy Pickled Radishes

Ingredients

1 large bunch radishes, about 1 lb. without tops

1 cup white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar

1 cup water

3 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons salt

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ teaspoon whole mustard seeds

5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 bay leaf

Slice off the tops and bottoms of the radishes, then use a sharp chef's knife or mandoline to slice the radishes into very thin rounds. Pack the rounds into a pint-sized canning jar. In a small saucepan, combine all the remaining ingredients and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally, then pour the mixture over the radishes. Let the mixture cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The pickles will keep well in the refrigerator for several weeks, although they are in their most fresh and crisp state for about 5 days after pickling.

Pickled Baby Beets

Ingredients

1 lb. baby beets, peeled and sliced in half

1 tablespoon whole mustard seed

1 tablespoon whole coriander seed

1 tablespoon whole fennel seed

1 tablespoon whole black pepper corn

4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

½ cup yellow onion sliced

½ cup sugar

2 cups champagne vinegar (or similar)

Combine the vinegar with 2 cups water in a sauce pan. Add all of the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Pack the beets into a container with a lid large enough to hold them.

Pour the pickling liquid over the beets, cover and place in the refrigerator.

Allow to pickle for at least two days. Serve cold or at room temperature.