Quick Pickled Spring Vegetables
I love anything pickled! I love a traditional cucumber pickle, but as I became a more adventurous eater I realized that a pickle didn't have to be a pickled cucumber spear. These quick pickles are a great way to celebrate the first spring crops. Try using small carrots, little beets, crisp round radishes, spring onions, hakurei turnips, peas and green garlic.
This recipe is for a quick pickle. They will not be shelf stable, but should be kept in the refrigerator. They are a great starter pickle for anyone nervous about the particulars of canning. Acidic foods wake up your pallet and bring out flavor, so start experimenting with ways to use pickles! I like them on top of tacos, served as an accompaniment on a cheese board or charcuterie plate, sprinkled on top of good bread that has been toasted and slathered with butter or goat cheese, as one element in a rice bowl, and, of course, just eaten straight out of the jar while standing in front of the refrigerator.
Inactive Time: 8 hrs
Cook and Prep time: 30 mins
Servings: 2 quart jars of pickles
- About 6 cups cleaned, cut fresh vegetables (I like to use small ones)
- Spices, herbs and aromatics, according to taste preferences. Some options: dill seed, mustard seed, coriander seed, bay leaves, peppercorns, fresh dill, garlic cloves, or hot pepper slices. Amounts: about 1/2 teaspoon of each spice, 1-2 cloves of garlic, 1-3 slices of hot pepper, 1 bay leaf, 1 sprig of any fresh herbs per quart jar.
- 2 cups white vinegar, rice vinegar, or mild wine vinegar
- 2 cups water
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 1/2 tablespoons salt
Cut your veggies into similar sized pieces. I usually cut long vegetables in spear shapes, then halve or quarter them (depending on size). Small veggies like peas and green garlic can be left whole.
Pack your 2 glass quart sized jars with the produce, leaving an inch of room at the top. Add selected spices, herbs and aromatics to each jar, pushing them down the sides (don't just place them on top).
In a pot on the stove, add the vinegar, water, sugar and salt. Simmer until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
Pour the hot brine into the filled jars, covering the vegetables completely but leaving around 1/2 inch of open space at the top of the jar.
Seal your jars and leave on the counter top until they come to room temperature (about two hours). Refrigerate the pickles. They will be ready in 6 hours, but most delicious after 24 hours.
These pickles will last in your refrigerator for about 3 weeks.