Recipe by: Rita Heikenfeld, cooking teacher for The Great Indoors
Wash jars and lids, then place in big bot covered with water. Bring to a boil and boil 15 minutes. Keep in hot water until you’re ready to fill them.(Beth has them hot in the dishwasher) Meanwhile, make brine and prepare peppers:
6 cups clear vinegar, 5% acidity
2 cups water2 cups sugar (see notes below )
Place brine ingredients in non-reactive pan, like Calphalon or stainless steel, both of which are available at The Great Indoors. Bring to a boil.
To Prepare Peppers:
Wash. Leave whole with a slit down the center, or cut into slices as desired. I like to remove seeds if I slice them, but this is optional. Remember the membrane that the seeds are attached to is the hottest part of the pepper, and the seeds are the second hottest part. Place peppers in sterilized, hot jars, packing tightly. Pour boiling brine over, covering peppers. Add seasonings, such as garlic, bay leaf, slices of sweet bell, herbs, etc. as desired, or leave plain. Seal and let cool away from drafts. Store away from heat and light. No need to process these as the vinegar, if you use 5%, keeps bacteria out. That’s all there is to this wonderful pickled pepper recipe. Making your own is so easy and much more crisp and tasty than the store-bought variety. If you like, chill in refrigerator before serving.
*Now I usually don’t add 2 cups sugar; I’ll start out with half a cup, taste the brine, and go from there. If you have extremely hot peppers, though, the 2 cups of sugar is not too much.
*And if you like, eliminate the sugar altogether, or use Splenda, a heat-stable sugar substitute which is natural.