We, along with much of the rest of the US, have been in the grip of an extended cold snap. The biting air has been a sharp reminder of just how far we are from the balmy days of summer. But this year I found a way to save the summer heat and keep it all through the dark cold days of winter. I pickled - for the first time - my late summer bounty of hot peppers.
I got a little carried away when buying pepper plants at the beginning of the summer. We love hot peppers, and even though I remembered our pepper surplus the year I put in 4 pepper plants, this year I actually bought more: jalapeno, habenero, cayenne, serrano, tabasco, and one that my electrician told me is called "pepper from the tree." We had hot peppers for every occasion and recipe, and plenty to spare. Luckily in the first part of the season we had tons of workmen around, so I was able to
Enter David Lebovitz. However unlikely it may seem, this American-turned-Parisian pastry chef had a post on his blog - "Pickled Pepper Recipe" - that solved my pepper woes, allowing me to stretch my pepper harvest until the next growing season.
- David Lebovitz based his pickled pepper recipe on a recipe by Michael Ruhlman (author of the recent book Ratio, the cookbook with a cover you can actually cook from). In his blog post about pickled peppers, Ruhlman in turn credits Michael Symon for the recipe.
- I used an assortment of hot peppers.
- The pickling process couldn't have been quicker, and I've been enjoying the peppers in recipes calling for fresh hot peppers. They add not only heat but an interesting flavor from the brine.
- Ruhlman says that the peppers last "for ages" in the fridge, and he seems to be right. Mine have been there for around 3 months, and are still going strong (so to speak).
I love having hot peppers in the fridge in the winter nearly as much as I love having hot peppers in the garden in the summer!