Oh, sure, cucumbers and beets are awesome pickled. Mixed veggies? Definitely a fave. But have you ever been curious about what else you could pickle and store in Mason jars? Here are a few you may not have thought of.
Pickled cabbage isn’t exactly unusual, especially if you’ve ever eaten a hot dog. If you’re a fan of that, though, consider expanding your palate with kimchee—Korea’s spicy, tangy answer to sauerkraut. You may need to take a trip to a Korean grocery store—traditional recipes call for gochugaru, or red pepper powder, and saeujeot, dried salted shrimp—but the final, fiery fermented result is well worth it.
“Pickled” in salt rather than vinegar, preserved lemons are a staple of North African and Indian cuisine. You can vary the recipe using limes or oranges, but make sure to use sea salt rather than table salt, which can leave a harsh chemical flavour. Preserved lemons make a lovely addition to couscous or rice, and can be used to flavour chicken stew.
Many Asian cuisines have recipes for fermented tofu, which is a way of preserving an otherwise perishable staple protein source. This Japanese recipe calls for coating tofu in miso, sake, and mirin, then packing it in cheesecloth to marinate. The result? A salty, savoury cheese-like spread.
Many people don’t think to pickle fruit, but these tangy spiced apples are a perfect accompaniment to a pork roast or served on a sandwich with cheese and ham. Make sure to prick apples with a fork before pickling so the brine can penetrate through the skin.
Add a tropical zing to your next roast chicken with sweet, tangy, gingery pickled mango. Mango pickle is a common accompaniment to Indian dishes as well, making a versatile—and delicious—addition to the table.
Use your jack ‘o lantern’s rind for zesty pickles. Pickled pumpkin takes about two weeks to be ready, so it will be right in time for packing into Christmas gifts, or sending to your American relatives for their Thanksgiving feasts—just make sure to scrape out any candle wax from the pumpkin first!