Thursday, August 5, 2010

Zucchini Pickles

Pick the zucchini when it's small, 1 to 1 1/2 inches around.  If you pick them all this small, your plant will produce more than if you let them go till they're the gigantic variety.  If you happen to miss one and it ends up looking like a zucchini on steroids, you can have it for dinner.  Cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and place cut side down in a large turkey roasting pan that has about 3 inches of water in it.  Cover and cook on the stove (using two burners) until it's fork tender.  Serve with butter and Parmesan cheese.  Easy!

Now the pickle recipe:

4 quarts small zucchini, unpeeled, sliced thin
3 large onions, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup salt
4 cups cider vinegar
4 cups sugar
2 tsps celery seeds
4 tsps mustard seeds
2 tsps turmeric
1 tsp dry mustard

Combine the zucchini and onions.  Sprinkle with salt and let stand for two hours.  Rinse with cold water.
Combine remaining ingredients in a large pot and heat till boiling.  Boil for two - five minutes.  Add the zucchini and onion.  Remove from the heat and let stand for another two hours.
If you are preserving the jars of pickles, now would be the time to make sure the jars and lids are sterilized.  After two hours, bring the mixture to a boil again and let it boil for 5 minutes.  Turn off the heat and fill the jars.  Put caps on.  
Process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes to make sure you have a good seal.  Makes approximately 8 pints of pickles.
We don't usually bother with processing as we eat the pickles fast enough that it's not a problem! 

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