Introduction: Pickled Hot Peppers

About: I love to spend time in the kitchen to relax and feed those I love with great eats and treats.

These are some zesty tasty peppers! They can be used in so many ways to give a dish a pop of heat; simple nachos, pasta dishes, chili, sloppy joes, almost any Mexican/Tex-Mex dish, use your imagination!

The beauty of this recipe, from Better Homes and Gardens book Can It! is that you can make these peppers as mild or spicy as you like. I love shopping for peppers at Ohio farmers markets, learning from the people who grow them what their heat level is. There are so many varieties that I was able to pick many different types and colors of peppers so these are some mighty pretty pickled peppers. I found my batch last year was more mild than I prefer, so I amped up the heat this year. As long as you keep the weight around 3 lbs, you'll end up with a yield of about 6 pints, depending on how well you trim the seeds and membranes of the peppers, you may need more or less peppers to fill the jars.

I like to use different sized jars as well, a pint of peppers might be too much for some of those I gift the jars to, but they do store quite well in the refrigerator once opened. I always like learning the different ways people use them, how would you use your pickled hot peppers?

Makes 6 pints, or the equivalent in smaller jars

Recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Can It!

Step 1: Gather Ingredients

1 1/2 lbs. fresh jalapeno and/or serrano peppers, or other hot peppers, washed

1 1/2 lbs. fresh poblano, other mild to medium peppers, washed

3 cups water

3 cups white vinegar

1 cup white wine vinegar

2 Tbsp. sugar

1 tsp. pickling salt

6 cloves garlic (extra depending on how many jars you can)

Step 2: Prepare Peppers

Thinly slice peppers into rings, discarding stem ends, excess seeds, and membranes. I find it easiest to cut most large peppers in half to de-seed, so my rings are actually pieces, if the peppers are small, I'll keep them whole.

Step 3: Prepare Brine, Fill Jars, and Process

Bring boiling-water canner to boil and sterilize jars at least 10 minutes, you can also sterilize the jars in the oven at 225F for at least 20 minutes, with either method keep the boiling-water canner water hot. Warm jar lids in a small saucepan, filled with water, over medium-low heat.

In a 4- to 5-quart stainless steel, enamel, or nonstick heavy pot combine the water, white vinegar, white wine vinegar, sugar, and pickling salt. Bring mixture to boiling, stirring until the sugar and salt dissolve.

Place a clove of garlic in each jar.

Pack sliced peppers into hot, sterilized jars, I use pint, 4, 8, and 12-oz. jars, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Pour hot liquid over peppers, maintaining the 1/2-inch headspace. Discard any remaining vinegar mixture. Wipe jar rims with a damp paper towel, place on lids and screwbands fingertip tight.

Process jars in boiling-water canner for 10 minutes, start timing when the water returns to boiling. Turn off burner and allow jars to cool in the pot for five minutes. Remove jars from canner to cooling racks, or a kitchen towel on the counter. Allow to stand at room temperature at least 12 hours before labeling, and keep for one week before serving.

Pickled Hot Peppers can be stored, away from heat and sunlight, for up to one year. Once opened, store jars in the refrigerator.

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