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Well, we made it through all the parties, shopping, and wonderful food! As my days get a bit longer, and my chore list gets a bit shorter, I love to try out some new recipes and play with some new gadgets!! One of my new favourite things to experiment with are pickles. Really, once you get the hang of canning, the sky’s the limit on the concoctions you can cook up. Just throw some veggies into a clean jar, add some spices and some vinegar, and you may just stumble on something great. Myself and a friend got together a little while ago and did just that!
A quick note on Do Chua pickles; Traditionally these are a Vietnamese “quick pickle”, meaning they are not processed and sealed. I altered this recipe to allow for making big batches that will store for many months. Don’t worry, they still work wonderfully as a condiment for Vietnamese subs, hot dogs, or most grilled meats!
Adapted Do Chua Pickles
Makes aprox 7, 8oz mason jars
6 cups of julienned carrots
6 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 cups julienned onion
1 ½ cup sugar
2 ½ cup white vinegar
2 cups water
½ tsp chili flakes PER JAR
Sterilize jars, lids, rings, and any utensils you will use in the canning process (the dishwasher is a great time saver here!)
Combine sugar, water and vinegar in a sauce pot, bring to a gentle simmer, dissolving the sugar
Layer garlic, carrot, onion, then carrot again in each jar, packing down tightly.
sprinkle ½ tsp of chili flakes on top of each jar.
Pour brine into jars, leaving about ½ and inch head space.
Process the pickles for 15 minutes in boiling water to kill any bacteria and assure the jar will seal.
Let sit at least a few weeks before sampling to give the carrots time to pickle.
A handy gadget that will help you:
Microplane spiral slicer:
Speed things up with this quick method of julienning carrots! Make sure to cut them every 3 inches or so to avoid one looooooong pickle!