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Pickles, Jams and Spreads

Cue's easy guide to preserving fruits and vegetables

Pickled in Time

Food preservation has been an activity that humans have actively used since the dawn of time. From placing meats in ice to smoking and curing, all these methods had the main purpose of extending the shelf life of the food we had in abundance.

There are many methods for preserving food such as:

  • Freezing
  • Smoking
  • Drying
  • Curing
  • Fermenting
  • Confit
  • Canning
  • Pickling
  • Jams & Jelly

Most of these methods include processing the food to a certain degree and enjoy right away or save for months at a time.

By removing water content (smoking, drying, curing), increasing ph while impeding exposure to oxygen (fermenting), submerging in a high acidity environment (pickling), or increasing its sugar levels (jams and jellies) we can reduce the reproduction of harmful bacteria and other pathogens that could cause serious illness.

Because the purpose of these methods is to prevent harmful bacteria from reproducing, it is very important to keep your hands and tools as clean as possible even if you aren't canning on a hot water bath or pressure cookers. So, we recommend you sanitize all mason jars, ladles, spoons, forks, and other items and that you always start with new lids for your mason jars that have also been sanitized and air-dried.

This blog will not go into detail about preservation methods after the food is processed (Hot Water Canning and Pressure Canning), but if interested, we suggest these two websites where you can find the most up-to-date and trustworthy information. Canning 101 and National Center for Home Food Preservation

Equipment and More

As we mentioned before, for this blog, we will be focusing mainly on pickling, jams, and jellies, two methods that we can easily adapt to be used in the Cue. It is important to note that we will not becanning in the Cue, but the recipes we will provide can be kept in the refrigerator to be enjoyed for up to 3 weeks.

Before we start, let's list a few tools you will be needing:

Pickling Recipes

Pickling

Pickling is the process of preserving or extending the shelf life of food by either anaerobic fermentation in brine or immersion in vinegar. The pickling procedure typically affects the food's texture, flavor, and color, especially on green food. The resulting food is called, you guessed correctly a pickle.

In this category you will find, pickles in every shape and form, chutneys, relishes, and other condiments.

The main ingredients for pickling are:

  • Destiel or white wine vinegar
  • Granulated Sugar (honey or other sugars can be used but be aware of flavor and always follow a recipe)
  • Water (depending on the recipe)
  • Spices (such as chili flake, fennel, dill or mustard seeds, turmeric or black pepper)
  • Salt (we suggest using canning or pickling salts since other salts may have anticaking ingredients that could cloudy the pickling liquid)
  • Ingredient to pickle (cucumber, zucchinis, carrots, etc)

 It is very important to keep in mind that the level of acidity is as important to its safety as it is to taste and texture. Therefore we suggest you always follow the recipe ratios of vinegar and water proportions to reduce harmful bacteria reproduction.

Classic Bread & Butter Pickled Cucumbers

Yield: about three 1/2 pint jars



Ingredients

1 English cucumber, washed and thinly sliced1 cup white wine vinegar (distilled or champagne)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoons pickling salt

1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

1/8 teaspoon celery seeds

1/8 teaspoon dill seeds

1/8 teaspoon black peppercorns

1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric
 

Procedure

Thinly slice the cucumber and pack them into each one of the cleaned mason jars. Set them aside.

Place the vinegar, sugar, salt, seeds, black peppercorns, and turmeric in the cookware and stir to combine.

Set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the liquids begin to boil. Make sure to stir occasionally.

Pour the boiling liquid over each one of the jars filled with the cucumbers, filling almost to the very top but making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Enjoy as a topping for salad, sandwiches, or with a slice of bread and butter!

Spicy Pickled Beets

Yield: about three 1/2 pint jars



Ingredients

1 cup white wine vinegar (distilled or champagne)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoons pickling salt

1/2 teaspoon chili flakes

1 star anise

¼ teaspoon black peppercorns

3 cups of cooked beets, diced

Procedure

Pack the diced cooked beets into each one of the cleaned mason jars. Set them aside. You can use red or yellow but make sure not to mix them with the red will color the yellow ones.

Place the vinegar, sugar, salt, chili flakes, star anise, and black peppercorns, in the cookware and stir to combine.

Set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the liquids begin to boil. Make sure to stir occasionally.

Pour the boiling liquid over each one of the jars, filling almost to the very top but making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Enjoy as a topping for salad, cheese plates, and appetizers!

Pickled Jalapeños

Yield: about three 1/2 pint jars

Ingredients

1 cup white wine vinegar (distilled or champagne)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoons pickling salt

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

3 cups of jalapeños, thinly sliced

Procedure

Pack the sliced jalapeños into each one of the cleaned mason jars. Set them aside. You can use any hot pepper such as Fresnos, serranos, or habaneros if you would like.

Place the vinegar, sugar, salt, and chopped garlic, in the cookware and stir to combine.

Set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the liquids begin to boil. Make sure to stir occasionally.

Turn the burner off, then pour the boiling liquid over each one of the jars, filling almost to the very top but making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim, and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Enjoy as a topping for nachos, pizza, chili or chopped into salsas.

Jams, Jellies and Spreads

Jam refers to a product made of whole fruit cut into pieces or crushed, then heated with water and sugar until it reaches "jelling" or "setting" point, which is achieved through the action of natural or added pectin. It is then sealed in containers and enjoyed over toast, yogurt, or even to make sauces.

Pectin is a natural ingredient found in many fruits such as apples, raspberries, cranberries, grapes, and plums, and more than has been isolated and mass-produced to be used in jam and jelly production.Pectin helps thicken the final product without over-reducing the fruit and sugar which will result in a better-tasting product overall.

How to jam on the Cue

Fo this section we wanted to share 3 recipes for you to try. Jam making in the Cue is as easy as 1,2,3. Just follow the directions, set the temperature, and get jamming!

Make sure to run the mason jars and their lids through a dishwashing machine cycle with the sanitizer cycle selected preferred. If a dishwashing machine is not available, please boil the jars, and lids tools in a large pot with boiling water for 5-10 minutes and allow them to air dry before using.

Strawberry Jam

Yields: about three 1/2 pint jars



Ingredients

3 cups crushed strawberries (fresh strawberries, leaves removed and mashed with a potato masher)

2 cups sugar

1 pinch salt

1 pouch liquid pectin

Procedure

Add the fruit, sugar, and salt into the Sauce Pot and set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C (medium-low). Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until the ingredients have come to a simmer. Make sure to stir frequently.

Once the ingredients come up to a simmer, reduce the temperature to 245°F/ 118°C and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until the jam has reduced by half and the color has intensified.

Add the liquid pectin directly into the cookware and continue cooking for 1 more minute.

Turn the burner off, then ladle the hot marmalade into the jars making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace, remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Perfect to spread on toast scones or cakes or as part of a yogurt parfait.

Easy Mixed Citrus Marmalade

Yields: about 3 one-pint jars



Ingredients

4-5 Orange or blood orange, zest, and juice

3 Lemon, zest, and juice

1 Grapefruit

1 pinch of kosher salt

2 cups sugar

1 pouch liquid pectin 

Procedure

Zest the skin from the citrus into the Sauce Pot, then squeeze the juice and add a total of 3 cups of mixed citrus juice to the Pot with the zest.

Add the sugar and salt and stir to combine. Set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C (medium-low) and cook for 5-7 minutes, or until the mixture comes up to a simmer. Make sure to mix frequently.

Once the ingredients come up to a simmer, reduce the temperature to 245°F/ 118°C and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until the jam has reduced by half and the color has intensified.

Add the liquid pectin directly into the cookware and continue cooking for 1 more minute.

Turn the burner off, then ladle the hot marmalade into the jars making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace, remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Perfect to spread on toast, scones, or cakes.

Spicy Peach Spread

Yields: three 1/2 pint jars



Ingredients

3 cups crushed peaches (fresh peaches, pitted, diced, and mashed with a potato masher)

2 1/2 cups sugar

1 pinch salt

1 teaspoon chili flakes

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 pouch liquid pectin

Procedure

Add the fruit, sugar, salt, chili flakes, and lemon juice into the Sauce Pot and set the temperature to 260°F/ 126°C (medium-low). Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until the ingredients have come to a simmer. Make sure to stir frequently.

Once the ingredients come up to a simmer, reduce the temperature to 245°F/ 118°C and continue cooking for 20-30 minutes or until the jam has reduced by half and the color has intensified.

Add the liquid pectin directly into the cookware and continue cooking for 1 more minute.

Turn the burner off, then ladle the hot marmalade into the jars making sure to leave ¼ inch headspace, remove air bubbles, wipe the jar rim and allow to cool completely uncovered.

Once cool (about 1-2 hours), cover with the lid and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.

Perfect to use on cheese boards or as a condiment for grilled meats.

Curious to try other amazing Cue recipes? 

Strawberry Jam (probe less!)

 

Pickled Pumpkin

 

Pickled Red Onion

 

Fried Pickles with Tangy Dill Mayo 

  

 

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