Count Broccula's veg-head ramblings

My home experiments with vegetarian cooking. Focused on seasonal produce with some vegan stuff thrown in for good measure. I may include random other food-related stuff as I please.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

PIcalilli circus

More detail later, but here's the recipe exactly as my mom wrote it:

Piccalilli

4 pounds green tomatoes
6 medium onions, washed and peeled
2 green bell peppers
1 red bell pepper
½ cup salt

2 cups sugar
1 pint (2 cups) cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons celery salt
4 Tablespoons mustard seed
1 Tablespoon whole cloves
2 Tablespoons cinnamon

Chop green tomatoes, onions and peppers in food processor. Using a large glass or ceramic bowl, layer the chopped vegetables, sprinkling the salt over the layers (4 or 5 layers.) Place a plate on top of the vegetables (to force out the excess water) and put aside for 3 or 4 hours. After the elapsed time, drain the liquid off of the vegetables using a colander or strainer. Rinse the vegetables with water to take the salt off.

Heat the sugar and vinegar until dissolved and add the vegetables and spices. The whole cloves and cinnamon should be wrapped in a piece of cheesecloth or other cloth before being placed in the pot. Cook everything on a low simmer for approximately 30 minutes. Either put into jars and place in the refrigerator or use the sterile canning method.

The tips your grandmother gave were as follows:

If you prefer, you can substitute “pickling spice” for the celery salts, mustard seed, cloves and cinnamon. It’s available in the spice section of the store and she said that she has made it that way lots of times and it is good. However, she also said that when you use those, you do have to use cheesecloth or a cloth bag.

This is better if you don’t eat it right away but let it marinate for a few weeks. She said that she has heard of people leaving the vegetables soaking in the brine overnight but she feels that this is too long and that a few hours works fine. She also said to be sure to use green tomatoes, not ones that have started to ripen. Apparently once they have started to ripen, they are softer and don’t work very well.

She also said that it’s easy to chop the vegetables in the food processor but you should use a setting that doesn’t pulverize things…the vegetables should be finely chopped, in small pieces.

1 Comments:

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March 22, 2011 at 7:18:00 AM PDT  

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