Giardiniera is a mixture of pickled veggies, usually served as a condiment, side dish, or mixed into salads. Here is a recipe for making both the sweet or the hot variety. Basically its the same vegetable mix, the sweet version contains sugar in the marinating liquid, the hot version does not. The sweet version takes 2 days to marinate. The hot version takes 2 to 3 weeks. Since I don't can, I can't give you instructions for that....sorry. The "cook time" is the marinating time for the sweet version.
Basic Giardiniera Vegetables
- 1 lb green Italian olives, crushed
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced (or 1 cup tiny pearl onions, peeled)
- 1 garlic clove, sliced thin
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced diagonally
- 1 stalk celery, sliced diagonally
- 2 cups cauliflower florets, cut into small chunks
- 1 cup broccoli floret (optional, omit in hot version)
- 1⁄2 red bell pepper, quartered and sliced
- 1⁄4 cup hot pepper (or less to taste for hot version only)
- 1⁄2 cup white vinegar or 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 1⁄4 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 6 peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon dry dill weed
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- Sweet: Combine all ingredients and refrigerate in a clean, tightly closed glass jar for 2 days before serving.
- Hot: Combine the water, vinegar, and salt in a pan and boil for a minute or so.
- Pour the hot mixture over the vegetables leaving 1/4 inch head space and cover.
- Allow the hot peppers and vegetables to pickle in a cool place for 2 to 3 weeks before serving.
This sure beats the store-bought giardiniera any day. I made both the hot and the sweet. While I am a fan of hot and spicy food, I found that I preferred the sweet variety of this recipe. I thought it had a fresher and lighter taste than the hot. I doubled the recipes and put it in mason jars -- the very first night just the 3 of us finished an entire jar of the sweet giardiniera. That's how good it is!!! Plus, I can cut the veggies to the size I want -- the kind in the store has huge pieces of cauliflower -- too much to eat in one bite, so I cut them smaller in this recipe. As another reviewer mentioned, I also added a can of miniature corn that I found in the Asian section of our store. This is so delicious and easy to make, and is great for a snack, to serve on an antipasto platter or as part of a buffet.
I made the sweet verison & now I must try the hot! I loved how crunchy the vegetables stayed in the marinade. I added zucchini sticks & omitted the broccoli. Thank you for sharing the recipe! =)
My husband loves these pickles. I made my own verion of an imported brand for years but as my DH said "these blow yours out of the water" Thanks, I think.;)