Welcome to my BlogSpot. I have created this blog in hopes of inspiring everyone to cook. I have found my inspiration from living in both Southern and Northern California. My influences in flavors have come from family recipes and meals with emphasis on healthy foods, marrying into an Italian family and the ethnic flavors throughout California. There are so many wonderful memories connected to our family dishes as well as new memories in the dishes that have been recently created. My husband, Randy who is recently retired, has been my biggest supporter and inspiration in our kitchen. He is my taster, my sous chef, and has created some really great dishes himself, which will be added to this blog. It is my hope that you too will be inspired to cook and create your own dishes for your loved ones and enjoy the craft of cooking.

One thing I ask of you is if you print out, email and pass out my recipes, please include my name and link.

Be sure to check out my Sweaty Equities blog about the ups and downs of crafty projects and our DIY remodels.
You can find it at http://sweatyequities.blogspot.com/

Friday, May 4, 2012

Sweet and Spicy Pickled Jalapeños

A few years ago, while at Rubio’s, a Mexican Restaurant, I discovered that I love their pickled jalapenos. I’ve always loved their fresh Mexican food but it took me awhile to actually try the jalapenos. It’s really all I can think about now when I order my food. I usually down about 3 of them with my meal, minus the membranes and seeds. I’ve had pickled jalapenos before but there was something special about these. They tasted not only spicy, but sweet with an aroma that I had a hard time pinning down at first. I tried to find the brand that they used in stores and even looked up the brand on the web, but to no avail.
I felt pretty sure that the floral spice that I was picking up was Allspice, so I started to mess around with different combinations of pickling and after a few tries I think I nailed it. Rubio’s jalapenos came with carrots and onions in it as well but my thoughts were that if I added carrots and onions it would just take up space where another jalapeno pepper could fit in the jar.
Give this recipe a try and you’ll see why I was so passionate about these pickled jalapeno peppers.

Sweet and Spicy Pickled Jalapeños

2 Sterilized 1-quart Canning Jars
4 Pounds Fresh Jalapeno Peppers, thoroughly cleaned
2 1/2 Cups Water
½ Cup Sugar
¼ Cup Coarse Kosher Salt
1 Teaspoon Dill Weed
1 Teaspoon Black Peppercorns
½ Teaspoon Celery Seeds
2 Bay Leaves
2 Tablespoons Whole Coriander Seeds
8 Cloves Garlic, peeled and sliced
2 Tablespoons Whole Allspice
1 Tablespoon Mustard Seeds
2 1/2 Cups Distilled White Vinegar

Sterilize the canning jars and lids.
Thoroughly clean the jalapenos and with a sharp paring knife make 3 slits in each pepper.
Bring all the ingredients except the jalapenos and vinegar to a soft boil until the sugar and salt dissolve completely. Add the vinegar and bring back to a soft boil. Add the jalapeno peppers in batches so that they submerge in the brine being careful not to over-crowd them. Cover with a lid and reduce the heat to a medium/low. Cook for approximately 10 minutes or until the jalapenos turn from a bright green to a more olive green and are tender.

With a slotted spoon scoop out about half the spices, bay leaves and garlic and put in the bottom of the clean jars. Stuff the cooked peppers into the jars, trying not to leave too much space between the jalapenos. –A wooden spoon can be used to push them closer together and fill in the gaps. –You’d be surprised at how many jalapenos you can fit into each jar. Pour the brine over the peppers to about ½ inch from the top. Add more spices to the top of the peppers. Wipe the tops clean and tightly place the lids on the jars.

At this point you can leave the jars out until they reach room temperature and then refrigerate them. They will be ready to eat in 2 days.

If you plan to store them in the cupboard then you need to proceed to these next steps to ensure that you get a proper seal. You must use the proper canning jars to store at room temperature. I don’t do this process because mine don’t last long enough to store for long term.

Process the filled jars by submerging in a hot water bath by boiling for 20 minutes. Remove jars from pot. Let cool down to room temperature. Jars should make a popping sound as their lids seal. If a lid doesn't properly seal, do not store the jar outside of the refrigerator.

I got this 2-quart size jar at Ross in the kitchen section for 5 dollars. I picked up four of them and they are great for pickling.

1 comment:

  1. My mouth is literally watering. Yum! Colleen