Wednesday, August 24, 2011

WFMW - Zucchini Pickles: Pickling Tutorial P1

In the summer of 2009, I was lucky enough to complete an internship at a bakery with good values. While at school, all I was used to was low quality butter, Sweetex, and Primex. When I started at The Sweet Life Bakery, it was almost as if a whole new world was opened for me. All butter- buttercream, fresh and seasonal fruit products, and nearly everything was homemade. I was once told that everywhere you work will influence and round out what you will do in your future. Although I have worked at many other places, I must say that what I gained from The Sweet Life has had the greatest impact on my values and I am forever grateful of that.

Not long after my employment ended at the Sweet Life, I became obsessed with the ideas of all butter goods, seasonal products, local farmer's markets, and making everything from scratch. Which is why I was absolutely thrilled to see this summer's issue of Bon Appetit!

Not only does the pie on the cover look to die for, but the entire content of this issue is about using produce from your local market effectively and using produce that is in season and at it's peak taste and freshness. Also, if you are a gardener, the recipes in this issue are specifically designed to use up all that fabulous produce right in your backyard.

One of the recipes that I was most excited to try, was the "Zucchini Pickles" recipe. You might be thinking... "Zucchini... Pickles?". Yeah.. That was my first thought. Then, after a bit of consideration, I figured that cucumber and zucchini are practically cousins! They must be a hit!

Here is the recipe from Bon Appetit Magazine:

Zucchini Dill Pickles

2 lb. small zucchini
4 T coarse sea salt
12 fresh dill sprigs
2 t yellow or brown mustard seeds
1 t coriander seeds
1 t dill seeds
1/4 t saffron threads
4 garlic cloves
4 red jalapenos
2 1/2 cups white wine vinegar
1/4 cup sugar

Your goal in cutting the zucchini is to make them 1. look like a pickle and 2. cut them to size so that they can properly fit in the canning jar:

Once cut, place the zucchini in a large bowl. Add 2T salt and 4 cups of ice. Add cold water to cover and top the bowl with a plate to keep each zucchini submerged:

Let the zucchini sit for two hours, drain, and rinse.

Divide your dill sprigs, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, dill seeds, saffron seeds, garlic, and jalapeno evenly between each jar. The recipe calls for 2 - 1 quart jars. I used smaller, 16oz jars so to figure out how many jars I needed, I put as much zucchini as I could in each jar. This way you know you have just the right amount of space, or if you need more.

Bring the vinegar, sugar, remaining 2T of salt, and 1 1/4 cups of water to a boil. Add your zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally until they look a 'khaki' green color. This should be about 2 minutes. Once cooked, transfer zucchini into your jars and divide the hot syrup between them. Be sure to leave about 1/2 inch of space at the top.

Place your lids on the jars and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Allow about a week to pickle, and enjoy! ( :

I have pickled my zucchini just this past Saturday so the wow factor is yet to be determined. I will be sure to follow up in a Part 2! Happy Pickling! ( :

P.S. I am eyeing up the pickles as they sit on my window sill. I. Can't. Wait.

(Works For Me Wednesday ( : )

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