You know those hot crunchy pickled carrots that they serve in some of the more authentic Mexican restaurants? Yep, you know what I'm talking about! The husband brought home a bag of assorted hot peppers last week that a friend had given him. Just a few I would have grilled, filled with cream cheese and wrapped with bacon (that's another post, my friends), or made into jalepeno jelly, but there were more than I could use, even if I made BOTH of those tasty concoctions. So I did a little research and came up with the idea to make hot pickled carrots. I've been toying with the idea for some time, and now I had one of the crucial ingredients. I couldn't come up with a recipe that called for fresh jalepenos, so I used a couple I had found as starting points and charged ahead. I opened a jar after 4 days, they are wonderful, but hardly spicy at all. My research told me to remove the seeds and membranes to keep the heat down, but I'm not sure I would do that again. We like them HOT!!! Also, I believe that the heat will increase as they age in the jar, but I JUST COULDN'T STAND IT, and had to crack open a jar this morning. Time will tell. Here's the recipe--enjoy!!!
Hot Pickled Carrots
5 lbs carrots, peeled and cut into uniform pieces, about 1/4' thick (make the skinny end pieces bigger so that they all cook evenly)
Jalepenos--lots and lots of jalepenos (I think I had about 50-60--including some that had matured to a red color and some that appeared to be habeneros)
2 large sweet onions
12 large cloves of garlic
4 t. dill seed (hard to find--Fred Meyers has it in the bulk spices)
8 cups cider vinegar
8 cups water
2/3 cup canning or Kosher salt
Prepare the vegetables, combining peppers and onions in one bowl. Layer pepper/onion mix, carrots and another layer of the pepper/onion mix tightly into pint jars. Add one garlic clove to each jar.
In a large pot, combine vinegar, water, salt and dill seed. Bring just to a boil, then ladle hot liquid over vegetables, leaving 1/4" headspace. Slide a table knife down the sides of jars to remove any air bubbles. Wipe rims of jars and place sterilized lids on each. Secure with jar rings. Place in water bath and process for 20 minutes. Yields 12 pints.