The recipe is modified from Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving by Kingry and Devine.
We love pickles and that does not just mean cucumbers. Pickled okra, green beans, baby onions, beets- and our new true love; pickled asparagus. We pick the asparagus every day and keep it in 2'" water until we have a few quarts. Longer spears can be snapped in half and with ends placed in water and stored in the refrigerator.
7 lbs asparagus spears
1 jalapeno pepper
4 cloves garlic
(optional- 2 tbsp curry paste)
3 tsp dill weed or dill seeds (your preference)
2-3 tbsp brown or yellow mustard seeds
5 cups white vinegar
1 2/3 cups water
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
4 tsp canning salt
Fill a pot with approximate 2 quarts water and bring to a boil. This is to pre-heat your asparagus. Prepare water bath canner and jars.
Put vinegar, water, sugar and salt in a pan and bring to a boil.
Chop the jalapeno and garlic. Place in small bowl and add spices (dill, mustard, curry paste) Stir till blended and set aside. Prepare your asparagus. Measure from the tip to the stem end and cut your spears to a length that will allow 1" headspace in your jars. I use a couple marks with a Sharpie on a plastic cutting board as a guide.
Save all your nubbin-ends- you will jar these up at the end! Place your trimmed asparagus spears in a large container that is on its side. Your spears will stay straight when the container is full and set upright. This helps when loading your jars.
When your asparagus spears are all trimmed to the same length and you have a container of your nubbins, you are ready to preheat your asparagus. Pour the boiling hot water into the container to cover the asparagus as well as the nubbins in your other container. After two minutes, drain water from asparagus and begin to fill jars with asparagus spears. Tipping jars on their sides may help load spears straight. Some sources recommend "tips down" but either way works fine for us.
When spears are packed into jars, pack the nubbins into another jar. Divide pepper/garlic/spice mixture among the jars.
Fill jars to 1/2" of the rim with boiling water/vinegar/sugar/salt mixture. Wipe rims of jars and seal.
Carefully load jars into water batch canner and bring to a boil for 10-15 minutes, following your canner's directions. If the vegetables are fairly thick I use the longer time.
We prefer to let the jars "age" for a couple weeks before we partake. They are delicious off the shelf or cooled first in the refrigerator before opening. Great as a snack, nibble or side dish. You will love them!
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