Friday, October 15, 2010

Hot Pickled Carrots

If you´ve ever eaten Mexican food in southern California, you´ll recognize these spicy pickled carrots which are put out as a free appetizer along with tortilla chips and salsa.

I had a craving for these the other day and found what tastes to me like a pretty good home-made version online. V agrees that these are pretty close.

Serves: 18

* 2 lbs carrots, peeled and sliced on the diagonal (1/4 inch thick)
* 2 yellow onions, peeled and sliced
* 1 1/2 quarts warm water
* 7 ounces whole canned jalapeno peppers, with liquid
* 1 tablespoon dried oregano
* 6 whole garlic cloves
* 2 cups cider vinegar
* 1/4 cup vegetable oil
* 2 bay leaves
* 1 tablespoon salt


Prep Time: 0 mins

Total Time: 30 mins

1. Place the carrots in a 3- or- 4 quart pot. Add the warm water, partially cover the pot, and bring to a boil over high heat.
2. Cook at a hard boil 5 minutes; remove from heat.
3. Add the peppers and their liquid, sliced onions, oregano, garlic, vinegar, oil, bay leaves, and salt.
4. Cover and let cool for several hours.
5. Taste the carrots.
6. If the flavor is hot enough for you transfer just the carrots, onions, and garlic to two clean quart jars.
7. If you prefer the pickles hotter, leave the peppers in.
8. Cover the contents with cooking liquid, and cap with clean lids.
9. Store the pickles in the refrigerator for three days before serving.
10. They keep for a week or so after opening.
11. 11 Makes about 9 cups.

I halved the recipe - given that they only keep for a week and there´s just the 2 of us. I also didn´t boil the carrots for the full 5 minutes - more like 3 1/2 and they´re perfect. We are not fans of intense heat in spicy foods so I removed the jalapeños after the batch had cooled and put them back in their original jar along with some of the pickling liquid that was left over.

We ate some of these immediately with chicken fajitas for dinner - very good.

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