I have always wanted to make pickles but always imagined that there would be an immense amount of work to prepare them. The hassle of buying all the jars and then sterilizing them. Lots of boiling and cutting and basically putting aside a weekend to make it all happen. On top of all that it is the middle of winter so what could you pickle anyways?
The answer to that is apparently anything! It seems that over the past couple of months there have been something has been pushing me to try it out. There was an article in Fine Cooking magazine #109 that I filed in the back of my mind, telling myself that I would go back and read it later. Then with the announcement of the March Charcutepalooza challenge being brining, namely corned beef, there was mention that brining is just pickling and it is easy to do so…voila! Fresh Pickled Mushrooms.
Fresh Pickled Mushrooms – based on recipe from Fine Cooking Magazine
2 cups cremini mushrooms cut into bite sized pieces
2 cups oyster mushrooms cut into bite sized pieces
2 cups shiitake mushrooms cut into bite sized pieces
2 cups button mushrooms cut into bite sized pieces
2 cups Portobello with the gills removed and cut into bite sized pieces
1 2/3 cups of white wine vinegar
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. sugar
2 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic slivered
16 peppercorns whole
8 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 Tbs. Kosher salt
Boil two 1 quart canning jars in an 8 quart canner for 10 minutes with the lid and band. I like to boil the bottom half of the tongs at the same time to reduce the chance of cross contamination. Lift the jars, lids and bands out of the water with the tongs, drain and set on a clean cloth to dry.
Boil mushrooms in 4 quarts of water for 10 minutes then drain and remove and place in the jars with the sprigs of thyme.
Mix the vinegar, olive oil, sugar, salt, garlic, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, peppercorns and a cup of water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Pour over the mushrooms, screw on the lids and refrigerate for 48-72 hours before serving.
You do not really need to wait that long to serve the mushrooms. I actually made a batch that I cooled and then served a couple of hours later and they were very good. However, there is a lot of flavour that develops in a few days.
The mushrooms are good for a couple of weeks in the fridge.