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Pickled Jalapeños

meowzebub asks: anybody else LOVE (Japanese) sweet pickled scallions?
copyu says: YEAH! (I'm not gonna argue about whether they are really 'scallions', but...U know...Heheheh!) I live near Tokyo, so they're readily available in 3 varieties: salt, sweet and 'water' taste, the latter for home processing, with as much (or as little chili) as you like! I love them all, esp the spicy home-processed, which we haven't done for years.

I am really interested to hear about other 'pickled pepper' methods. I love pickled red and yellow paprika, which is almost unavailable here. Back in April 2004, I found bags of beautiful peppers for only a few bucks per bag and pickled several quarts of them. We finished the last jar 4 years later, in mid 2008. (I know they lose nutritional value, but this is "comfort food" for me! Hungarian ancestry...)

The method I used was a bit [VERY?!] 'suspect' by 2009 standards, but we are still here with no upset tummies or botulism. I just made the pickle brine and poured the boiling liquid over the washed fillets, which were jammed tight into hot, sterilized jars with a clove of garlic. Then the sterilized lids were screwed on. Stored in a dark, cool cabinet until needed. (I'd usually refrigerate them before opening, though.) They were the absolute BEST pickled paprika I've ever tasted. Almost ZERO processing time in boiling water. (About 5 min in rapidly boiling water, to keep the pickle liquid hot before the lids went on. YIKES!) I notice that the website that provided the recipe has disappeared. I can see why, when I look at the currently 'recommended' methods.

This year I found really nice paprika at half-price and couldn't resist. I did 3qts according to the original method and 4qts with a 20min boiling water bath. [That's STILL NOT GOOD ENOUGH to kill and avoid botulism, if you believe everything you read on the internet...]

The first lot, this year, [unprocessed] I used an equal mix of vinegars (6.2% and 5% acetic acid). The second lot, processed, (equal mix of 6% and 4.2% acetic acid).

I plan to enjoy these. I don't think I'm suicidal. I understand that Clostridium botulinum can't reproduce in a highly acidic environment (>pH4.6) and the spores can't hurt you when they're in a mature person's acidic digestive tract...so...what's the danger?

What is your take? Am I going to die a miserable death this year if I eat this stuff? Thanks for reading!

Jun 25, 2009
copyu in Recipes