PICCALILLI (five 8 ounce jars)
One of Britain’s favorite pickles, piccalilli is also called Indian pickle and probably has roots in India. In Britain it is a traditional accompaniment to strong cheese, a ploughman’s lunch, ham, sausages or savory pies. In the United States chowchow, a green tomato and mustard pickle relish favored in the mid-Atlantic and southern states, is a close cousin.
2 pounds mixed seasonal vegetables, such as cauliflower, pearl onions, cucumber, carrots or French beans
2-1/2 tablespoons salt
2-1/4 cups malt vinegar
15 small, dried, whole chiles, rinsed
scant 1 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons dry mustard
1 tablespoon turmeric
- Prepare the vegetables of your choice and cut them into small bite sized pieces. Toss with the salt in a large glass bowl. Cover and let stand in a cool place overnight.
- The following day, drain the vegetables well. Bring the vinegar and chiles to a boil in a nonreactive saucepan and cook for 2 minutes. Strain the vinegar, discarding the chiles.
- Mix together the sugar, cornstarch, mustard and turmeric in a bowl. Stir in enough of the vinegar to make a smooth paste. Return the remaining vinegar to its saucepan and return to a boil. Whisk the hot vinegar into the paste, then return to the saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Simmer for 3 minutes, then stir in the vegetables.
- Pack into 5 sterilized, hot 8 ounce glass jars and seal immediately while still hot. Let stand until cool. Wipe clean and label. Store jars in a cool, dark place for at least 4 weeks before using. Once opened, store in the refrigerator and eat within one week.
adapted from Victoria Blashford-Snell and Brigitte Hafner, The Illustrated Kitchen Bible