Pickled Spring or the Only Way I Will Eat Asparagus

As an adult I have come around to most vegetables I despised as a kid.  Tomatoes, Zucchini, Mushrooms…we have found a way to love each other a new.  But Asparagus was left out in the cold.  I really wanted to like them!  Of all vegetables they bring back memories of the Jolly Green Giant the most.  There was a glimmer of hope for these tiny trees when I happened upon this salad.

However, with all the other vegetables too choose from I didn’t see Asparagus in my house on regular rotation.  Until, we threw a dinner party for my dear friend Emily.  Preparing a gluten free vegan dinner is out of my comfort zone, but I was determined that she leave the house stuffed rather than starved as so often is the case when those with dietary restrictions dine over or out.

The Menu

Pickle Platter:  Asparagus with Spring Onions and Sonomono

Main:  French Lentil and Red Quinoa Pilaf with Roasted Cauliflower

Accompaniment:  Grilled Cabbage with Horseradish Mustard Glaze

Dessert:  Strawberries with Melted Dark Chocolate

The pickle platter got the most love from me.  Specifically the Asparagus.  That’s right, I believe I am finally in love.  Since that dinner I have made jars and jars of these, still they manage to disappear as both the Hubs and I sneak hungry fingers into the jar between meals.  Luckily, they are so easy to prepare it is an easy addiction to sustain.

Pickled Spring Onions and Asparagus

adapted from Martha Stewart April 2012

What you need:

3 3/4 cups water

3 cups white-wine vinegar

2 teaspoon whole coriander seeds

7 strips (1 inch wide) fresh lemon zest

3 bay leaves

2 tablespoons coarse sea salt

1/3 cup cane sugar

4 bunches spring onions, bottom inch trimmed off and cut into 5 inch sections

1 bunch asparagus, bottom inch trimmed off and cut into 5 inch sections

4 pint jars

What you need to do:

Bring water, vinegar, lemon, coriander, bay leaves, salt and sugar to boil in a medium saucepan.  Add chopped onions and return to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cook for 4 minutes.  Meanwhile divide chopped asparagus into your 4 pint jars.  Add cooked onions, and pour remaining liquid between 4 jars.  Screw on lids and let cool to room temp on a wire rack for 1 hour.  Refrigerate 1 day or up to 1 month.

Happy Pickling!

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