Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
Where’s the peck of pickled peppers that Peter Piper picked?
(*scratching my head*) Have you ever stopped to really think about this nursery rhyme?
So here’s the thing. The peppers Peter picked couldn’t have already been pickled at the time he picked them. I mean, unless horticulture was vastly different in the early 19th century than it is today, my guess is that pepper plants weren’t self-pickling.
No, my guess is that Peter pickled them after he picked them.
And we all know what that means. Yes, Peter Piper was a recipe developer.
The first known account of Peter’s famous pickled peppers dates back to 1813 in jolly old London town. But somehow it got lost. For two centuries. After all, the rhyme still appears today as it did then with that ever-resonating question: “Where’s the peck of pickled peppers that Peter Piper picked?”
But the fact is, the world of literature can finally put this grand question to rest. Why? Because I have the answer.
“Where’s the peck of pickled peppers that Peter Piper picked?”
HERE….at The Daring Gourmet.
Let’s get started!
Oh, but first…you may be asking yourself, “Why would I want to make pickled peppers? I mean, Peter obviously had his reasons, but I certainly can’t think of any.” Fair enough. Here’s why.
They’re delicious and have tons of uses!
Here are just a few of the ways you can use them. You can use them on or in or with:
- Bruschettas or Sandwiches
- Crostini with goat cheese
- Hamburgers and hot dogs
- Pasta or chicken salads
- Lentil or grain salads
- Pork chops or chicken
- Tacos for a twist
- Salsa for some extra flavor
- Pasta sauce for some kick
- Deep-fried like pickles
- Greek salads
In addition to the above ideas, they’re a classic and positively perfect addition to any antipasto and cheese platter. They’re awesome for entertaining!
Okay, so let’s get pickling, folks!
For this recipe we’re going to use bell peppers. You can also use chili peppers if you prefer.
Select the freshest bell peppers you can find. Get a variety of colors. Thoroughly wash them.
Cut them in half and remove the stem, seeds and membranes. Cut them into 1/4 inch strips. Do the same with the onions (well, except for removing the stems, seeds and membranes because, uh, they don’t have any.)
Layer the peppers and onions in a large non-metallic bowl and toss in the salt. Put a plate on top of the veggies to slightly weigh them down. Let them sit for 24 hours to draw out the excess liquid. During that period give the veggies a toss or two.
In a colander, rinse and thoroughly drain the veggies. Pat them dry with some paper towels. Then pack the drained veggies into the jars, leaving about an inch from the top.
Prepare the pickling solution. Bring the pickling mixture to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce the heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes.
Strain the pickling solution.
Pour the hot liquid over them, covering the tops of the veggies by 1/2 inch and leaving 1/2 inch of headspace from the top of the jar.
Process the jars in a water bath for 10 minutes.
I use and recommend the Granite Ware Canning Kit..
Store in a dark, cool place. Let the peppers sit for at least 6 weeks before using to allow the flavors to fully develop. If stored properly will keep up to a year.
- 4 large bells peppers of mixed colors (red, yellow, green, orange), stems, seeds and membranes removed, cut in half and then cut into ¼ inch strips (you can also use the equivalent amount of chili peppers instead)
- ⅓ cup sea salt
- 1 large yellow onion, cut in half and then cut into ¼ inch strips
- 2 teaspoons pickling, kosher or sea salt
- 3 cups apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons whole cloves
- 2 teaspoons allspice berries
- 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoondill seeds
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 bay leaf
- Layer the peppers and onions in a large non-metallic bowl and toss with the ⅓ cup of salt. Put a plate on top of the veggies to slightly weigh them down. Let them sit for 24 hours to draw out the excess liquid. During that period give the veggies a toss or two. In a colander, thoroughly rinse and drain the veggies. Pat them dry with some paper towels.
- In a medium saucepan, add all the pickling ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Strain the liquid by pouring it into a sieve over another pot or large bowl. Discard the spices.
- Pack the veggies in sterilized jars and pour the hot liquid over them, covering the tops of them by ½ inch and leaving ½ inch headspace from the top of the jar. Process in a water bath for 10 minutes.
- Store in a dark, cool place. Let sit for at least 6 weeks before using to allow the flavors to develop. If stored properly will keep for up to a year.
Scott Johnson says
How many 500ml (2 cup) jars will this yield?
will the peppers be Brickell I don’t want them mushy I have ball pickling crisp granules can I use them to make them crisp.
Is the 24 hour salt soak necessary?
BERYL BALFOUR says
Hi Kimberley – yes, I can see why your followers were confused about the salt – the one is for drawing the excess moisture from the peppers like you do to get the bitterness out of aubergines/eggplants. I guess, you would use the sea salt for the peppers and the pickling salt for the pickling solution. I am relatively new to pickling so don’t have all the pickling spices. I am struggling to get the seeds Coriander/Dill/All Spice Berries? Can I use ground? I have masses of spices and herbs, love them, but the seeds are not easy to come by. I have lots of green peppers and banana peppers, but not the red, yellow, orange – so I guess I will have to go out and buy those…..not serious. I know, this gives colour. Would only using the green peppers and banana peppers, not give it a sweet natural pepper flavour? I want to do it right. Many thanks, appreciate what you are doing. Your photographs look amazing – makes me salivate!
Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
Thank you, Beryl. Correct, the different colors are largely for…color. You can use whatever varieties/color you have on hand. The whole spices are used in canning because ground spices will make the liquid dark and murky and with a somewhat sandy texture.
Do you not add water in with vinegar? I think your recipe is the first that doesn’t add water.
Seems simple enough appreciate the post just picked all the remaining peppers befor the first freeze comes in tonight.
I made a batch. Delightful.
I’m confused it says toss with 1/3 cup salt but that’s not in recipe it says 2 tbsp. Should I change that on recipe ??? Thanks
I think that why it says rinse then pat dry after it soaked in salt water.
Cynthia B Fleming -Ramseu says
recipe does say 1/3 cup sea salt
It’s the very first item in the list