Pickled jalapenos

I was at Dave’s house for lunch a couple of Saturdays ago. And while I was cooking lunch, he suddenly got all excited and pulled out a jar from the fridge and said “Taste! Taste!” So I went ahead and picked a jalapeno out of the jar and popped it into my mouth. Pickled to perfection, spicy just the way I like it. And tart, like store bought jalapenos. Only, what I had tasted wasn’t store bought. It was made at home. In nothing more than thirty minutes.

What’s worse (or better)… he had used, for the jalapenos, a jar of which once had olives and also the juice from the olive jar. He’s really enterprising, like that. And when it comes to food, I might almost be at that point where I can trust him blindly.

Typically, a recipe for pickled jalapenos that you might look up on the web calls for a bay leaf. He has an all spice plant growing in his balcony, so he used a single leaf from the all spice plant instead.

Also, in the ingredients below, I’ve mentioned serrano peppers because I associate them with the thick(ish), relatively shorter and dark green variety of green chile peppers I used to pick up at Food Lion when I was in Raleigh. Here, in India, I guess you can just walk up to the grocer and pick your variety of the above described peppers.

Ingredients:
1. 1 all-spice leaf (or bay leaf)
2. 1 cup water
3. 10-15 medium sized serrano peppers, washed and cut into slices, about 1/4 inch thick
4. 1 teaspoon salt
5. 3 tbsp olive oil
6. 1/2 cup white (cider) vinegar
7. Instead of (4 through 6), you can use the juice from a jar of olives/jalapenos, after you have used the olives/jalapenos

Method:
1. Bring some water to a boil. Add the cut peppers into it along with the bay/all-spice leaf and cook for a while, ensuring that the peppers don’t go limp but lose their colour. When you fish them out of the water, they should be a dull green-ish brown, the colour that store bought jalapenos usually are.
2. Pack these sliced peppers and the leaf loosely in a clean jar.
3. Heat the vinegar, oil and salt. Alternately, heat the juice from an older jar just a little bit.
4. Pour this liquid over the peppers in the jar.
5. Lightly place a lid over the jar and bring the contents down to room temperature.
6. Once it has been cooled, seal the jar and just close it tight and store for further use.

The pickled peppers should be good for a few weeks, if refrigerated.

It’s definitely worth trying, this recipe. Store bought jalapenos are about Rs 275/- for a jar, here in India. A jar worth of green peppers is about Rs 20/-. Vinegar, salt, olive oil is something everybody usually has in their pantries. If not, I’m sure you have that jar of juice. The math is out there. All it’ll take is some effort. 🙂

I’ll ensure I’ve put a picture up by later tonight. Promise!

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