How to Prepare and Can Your Own Pickled Relish
Pickling relish encompasses a wide-range of recipes that produces a delicious condiment that can be sweet, spicy or a combination of both. However, most of them tend to be on the sweet side whereas pepper relishes tend to be more on the spicy. Let’s take a look at a sweet pickling relish recipe that is not only delicious, but easy to process and store as well.
1 quart of cucumber (finely-chopped)
2 cups of apple cider vinegar
1 cup of chopped green bell pepper
1 cup of chopped red sweet pepper
2 cups of chopped onion
1 tablespoon of ground mustard seed
1 tablespoon of celery seed
1-3 cups of sugar (to taste)
¼ cup of canning salt
Take your chopped veggies and place them in a large bowl. Sprinkle the salt over them before covering the veggies with cool water. Cover with a towel and let stand for at least two hours. This will condition the vegetables by unlocking their flavors while making them easier to process at the same time. Once the vegetables are done soaking, dump out the water and give them a good rinse through a colander. Press out as much moisture as possible and set the veggies aside for a moment.
Add the vinegar and remaining ingredients to a stockpot and stir until everything is mixed. Add the vegetables and bring to a simmer for 10 minutes. Stir frequently to ensure even heating and prevent scorching. Add a little bit of water if necessary in order to cover the mixture. At the same time, make sure that your canning jars and lid assemblies are being heated. You also want to get the water bath canner going so that everything will be ready for processing once the sweet relish is ready.
Packing and Processing
Remove the relish from heat and start ladling or funneling the mixture into the heated canning jars. Fill and pack until ¼ inch of headspace remains. Add some of the cooking liquid to each jar until the relish is covered, and make sure to remove any excess air bubbles. Add more relish or liquid as necessary. Wipe down the rims with a damp cloth or towel and attach the lid assemblies.
Process pint jars for 10 minutes and quarts for 15, making sure that you adjust for altitude. Remove from heat when finished, and allow the jars to cool overnight at room temperature. Check the seals on the jars before labeling, dating and storing them in a cool and dark place. You can store properly-sealed jars for upwards of a year, but as usual, try and rotate out supplies so you consume everything within around six months to be on the safe side. For any jars that were not sealed properly, you can re-process them or refrigerate and consume the product within a week or two.
Feel free to add some “heat” to this relish if you like, and you can improvise with different vegetables as you go as well. This is a great way to have access to a healthy and all-natural condiment that can also make survival eating more enjoyable. Try it out for yourself and see how this relish can be a welcome addition to your stockpile.