Jars Of Green Jewels

jalapenosWe enjoy spicy food – the real spicy stuff that leaves a pleasant tingle in your mouth. We also like fermented food, full of probiotics and tangy goodness. What’s better than combining the two?

Pickled jalapeños are a favorite of ours. They’re great on nachos, quesadillas (hmm…pretty much anything with cheese!), add a nice hint of heat to a pot of beans or a punch of flavor to spaghetti. We go through them quickly. In order to get pickled jalapeños without a bunch of additives like food coloring, we buy them in the can from the local mercado. Many cans contain BPA*, though, so this is not ideal. Our solution: make some lacto-fermented jalapeños**.

After buying slightly more than a pound of the peppers at the farmer’s market, we washed them and sliced them into rounds. (Wearing gloves. Don’t forget the gloves! Raw jalapeños will burn the living daylights out of you if you get the juice on you/in your eye/on any delicate skin, so use care when handling.) The slices are then put into jars, kombucha vinegar and brine are added, and the jars are closed. The jars need to be burped periodically to release the pressure that will build up from the fermentation. After a few weeks, they’ll be ready to be eat.

We made two quart-sized jars with the Farmer’s Market peppers. What’s next on the fermenting horizon? Probably baechu kimchi (배추김치)…and we might just go old school and bury the crock in our yard! Stay tuned.

*more information about BPA health risks here: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/03/25/health-risks-bpa.aspx

**Cultures for Health recipe here: http://www.culturesforhealth.com/learn/recipe/lacto-fermentation-recipes/lacto-fermented-sliced-jalapenos/