Prep 12 hrs
Cook 1 hr
This is similar to the "red relish" that use to be sold under the Heinz and Knott's Berry Farm labels. Source: Fancy Pantry by Helen Witty.
- 2 sticks cinnamon, broken up (2 to 3 Inches each before breaking)
- 2 teaspoons cloves, whole, slightly bruised
- 2 teaspoons allspice, whole, bruised
- 4 cups cider vinegar
- 4 cups tomatoes, coarsely chopped peeled and seeded (about 6 large)
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 teaspoons mustard seeds
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 cups cucumbers, chopped, unpeeled firm (do not use waxed cucumbers)
- 1 1⁄2 cups red bell peppers, chopped cored and seeded
- 1 1⁄2 cups green bell peppers, chopped cored and seeded
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons turmeric
- 1⁄2 cup pickling salt (or other non-iodized salt)
- 8 cups water
- Tie the cinnamon, cloves and allspice loosely in a square of cheesecloth.
- Combine vinegar with the bag of spices in a non-aluminum pan. Bring the vinegar to boiling, adjust the heat and simmer it, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, bring the mixture to a boil, then adjust the heat and simmer the mixture, partly covered, until it resembles a puree, about 30 minutes.
- Add the sugar, mustard seed, and Cayenne pepper. Pour the mixture into a bowl, cool and cover it, and let stand overnight at room temperature.
- Meanwhile, combine the cucumbers, red and green peppers, celery, and onion in a ceramic or stainless-steel bowl. Sprinkle the turmeric and salt over the vegetables, then add the 8 cups of water. Stir the mixture, cover it, and refrigerate overnight.
- Wash 7 half-pint jars. Keep hot until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs.
- Drain the liquid from the salted vegetables and replace it with enough fresh cold water to cover them; let the vegetables soak for 1 hour, then drain them in a colander, pressing lightly.
- Return the vinegar/tomato mixture to pot and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Add the drained vegetables, then return the relish to a full boil, stirring frequently, and cook it, uncovered, over high heat, for 5 minutes. Remove the relish from the heat.
- Remove the spice bag from the relish; squeeze out all possible liquid from the bag into the pot, then discard the bag.
- Ladle the hot relish into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/2-inch head space. Wipe rim with a clean damp cloth. Attach lid. Fill and close remaining jars. Process jars in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Yields 7 half-pints.
This is the best relish I have ever made! My husband and I love it! It is a sweet relish that reminds me of spices in gherkin pickles and looks beautiful in the jar. There's no heat - but it would be good made with several hot peppers. My only problem with the recipe is that there is too much liquid at the end - so I would try 2-3 cups vinegar rather than the 4 it asks for. Use Roma tomatoes if you have them - you could try canned tomatoes well drained - I think it would make the process easier. Each batch makes about 3-1/2 pints.