Pickling Asparagus

You can preserve the taste and nutrition of asparagus by pickling it. Aside from being practical (no need to buy from the stores!), it won’t have the preservatives usually put in commercially-produced pickled asparagus.

Pickling asparagus doesn’t require a lot of complicated ingredients and high-tech equipment—just the usual, everyday stuff you see in your kitchen. It has a strong shelf-life, too. It can be stored for as long as 12 months.

The ingredients you will need are:

~Asparagus, about four bunches, washed and trimmed to fit the size of your jar; leave 2cm headspace
~garlic, six cloves
~white vinegar, two cups
~fresh dill, 12 sprigs
~mustard seeds, 1 tablespoon
~water, two cups
~pickling salt, 1 tablespoon
~granulated sugar, two tablespoons
~salt, 1/3 cup

Begin by allowing the asparagus to sit in a bowl of water with the 1/3 cup of salt. Let it stay there for about two hours before draining the water.

Then, combine the water, vinegar, sugar, pickling salt, mustard and fresh dill seeds in a large saucepan and bring the whole thing to a boil. Once boiling, bring the heat to low and allow it to simmer for about three minutes. After that, turn off the heat and transfer the asparagus in sterilized pickling jars. Make sure to leave a headspace of at least two centimetres. Also take note to position the asparagus with the tips down.

Add the garlic cloves, some more dills and mustard seeds before sealing the jars. You can experiment at this point and add what herb and spice you like such as red pepper flakes. Pour the hot vinegar liquid into the jar leaving about ¼ of an inch head space. Wipe any dripping from the mouth of the jar and allow to cool to room temperature before completely sealing. Place the jars in a cool, dark place.

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