Pickled Peppers


Every other week in a vacant lot near Jefferson Park Transit Center, a few farmers gather to hold a small market.  Though it is hardly the size or scope of Green City Market, sometimes there are some interesting finds.  A few weeks ago, straight garlic scapes.  This week, banana peppers. I went through a pickled pepper phase a couple years back.  I wanted them on everything.  Giardiniera, peperoncini, banana peppers, I went through jar after jar.  Though I have never done any canning of my own, when I saw a dozen ball jars on sale on a random trip to the hardware store, I knew what I had to do.

I meant to start my personal pickling journey of can-tastic proportions with some tiny cucumbers I found at the Lincoln Square market.  Life side-tracked me, and they went soft waiting.  But when I found banana peppers at Jefferson Park’s farmer’s market, the time had clearly arrived. To take up jars against a sea of winter months… and pickle.

After washing my jars in warm soapy water,  I split some garlic lengthwise and put about a clove and a half into each jar.

Then I cut up my banana peppers.  I found given the size and shape of the pepper that it was easiest to cut them into rings and then take out the seeds afterwards. I just pressed my thumb through the rings to remove the seeds.

If they’re hot peppers (like these), and you’re sensitive, wear gloves.  I washed my hands right afterwards, but they’re still tingling 3 hours later.

I loaded these into a jar and brought my pickling liquid to a boil

Pickling Liquid

1 cup white distilled vinegar
1 cup water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar

I poured this into the waiting jars full of peppers and garlic, leaving a 1/2 inch room at the top.  I sealed them and then put them into a pot of boiling water such that the water came halfway up the sides of the jars and left them to boil for 10 minutes.

That’s it.

In two weeks, I can open them and see if they’re any good.  Fingers crossed.

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