Pickled Beets

 

A traditional pickled beets canning recipe with the option of adding a traditional home-made pickling spice using the pickling spice recipe added below.

Pickled Beets

Ingredients                                                                Makes: 4 pints
12 to16 medium beets (about 4lbs)
1 cup purified water
2 cups vinegar ~or~ apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup granulated organic sugar
2 tsp pickling salt ~or~ kosher salt
2 Tbsp pickling spice  *see recipe below!

Instructions
Sterilize the jars and lids. Check the jars and lids for any defects and discard if found. Place the quality jars and lids to be used, in a large sauce-pot, stockpot or canner fill with enough water to cover the jars by at least an inch. Bring the water to a boil and allow the jars to cook for a minute; then turn off the heat. Place a clean tea towel on the counter for the jars to drain and cool. Using a jar lifter and the magnetic lid lifter, remove the jars from the water and transfer to the towel.

Prepare the beets. Wash and scrub the beets well. Trim off the beet tops leaving just a little of the greens and root tip to reduce bleeding. Place in a large pot, cover with water, bring to boil then simmer until tender, about 30 minutes.

Prepare a cold-water bath for the beets when they are finished cooking. Remove tender beets with a slotted spoon and transfer to the cold-water. When the beets have cooled enough in the water, the skins should easily rub off using your hands. Cut the ends off the beets, then cut into 1/2 to 1/4-inch slices and set aside.

Prepare vinegar mixture. Add vinegar, water, sugar and salt to a medium saucepan. Bring to boil over high heat, stirring until salt and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cover until ready to use.

Fill the jars. Add to the bottom of each sterilized jar half a teaspoon of pickling spice. To avoid having the pickling spice floating around in the jar of beets, it can be tied up in cheesecloth instead and then placed at the bottom of the jar.

Add the sliced beets, packing them as compactly as possible without crushing them. Ladle the vinegar mixture into the jars using the funnel, leaving 1/4-inch headspace at the top. Remove any bubbles by gently moving the contents of the jar with a chopstick or similar utensil; then refill jars with additional liquid, if necessary. Clean jar rims with wet paper towel. Add lids and screw on rings just until finger tight, not too tight.

For refrigerator pickled beets. Place jars in refrigerator and allow to marinate for at least 3 weeks for the best flavour. They will be good for 6 months.

For water process canning of beets. Process jars in boiling water canner for 30 minutes, unless you live over 1000 feet (306 meters) above sea level then you will need to process the jars for 40 minutes. For every additional 1000 feet above sea level process the jars for 10 minutes longer to ensure safe canning. After water processing the beets for their required amount of time, remove the canner lid and turn off the heat. Leave the jars in the hot water for 10 minutes before removing. Remove the jars using a jar lifter and allow them to rest on a towel, undisturbed for 24 hours. Note: Introducing jars from cold to hot and hot to cold environments could cause the jars to break.

Storage. Check for seal after the 24 hours; lids should not flex up and down when the center is pressed. For the best flavour, allow the beans to stand for about 5 weeks before eating. Store jars in cool, dark place. They are shelf stable for 1 year and good in the fridge for 6 months after opening.

Recipe shared by: J. Marshall

Pickling Spice

A traditional combination of spices used to enhance flavour in a variety of pickling recipes.

Ingredients
2 Tbsp whole mustard seeds
1 Tbsp whole allspice berries
2 tsp whole coriander seeds
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp ground ginger
2 bay leaves, crumbled
2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half ~or~ 1 tsp cinnamon powder
6 whole cloves

Instructions
Combine ingredients. In a small jar combine the above ingredients of: mustard seeds, allspice berries, whole coriander seeds, red pepper flakes, ground ginger, crumbled bay leaves, broken cinnamon sticks or powder and the cloves. Apply a tight-fitting lid and shake the contents of the jar to combine. Mixture can be stored in the tightly sealed jar for up to 1 month without any loss of flavour.

Recipe shared by: J. Marshall

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