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Yield: 8 to 10 pint jars
Making and canning your own pickled Brussels sprouts or pickled cauliflower is pretty easy with the directions below!
But do note that the vinegar (pickling) is important. There are no recipes or directions for canning Brussels Sprouts from any of the canning authorities (USDA, Ball Blue Book, university food science departments, etc.). One, Michigan State University's extension, provided this explanation: Brussels sprouts are "Not recommended for canning because the processing intensifies strong flavors and discolors the vegetable. Brussels sprouts are much better frozen or pickled. "
If you'd rather freeze the cauliflower or Brussels Sprouts, see this page.
Wash the cauliflower flowerets or brussel sprouts (removing stems and blemished outer leaves)
The dishwasher is fine for the jars; especially if it has a "sanitize" cycle. I get that going while I'm preparing everything else, so it's done by the time I'm ready to fill the jars. If you don't have a dishwasher, submerge the jars in a large pot (the canner itself) of water and bring it to a boil.
Be sure to let it go through the rinse cycle to get rid of any soap!
Fill the canner about 1/2 full of water and start it heating (with the lid on).
Put the lids into the small pot of boiling water for at least several minutes. Note: everything gets sanitized in the water bath (step 7) anyway, so this just helps to ensure there is no spoilage later!)
Boil the veggies in salt water (4 tsp canning salt per gallon of water) for 3 minutes for cauliflower and 4 minutes for brussel sprouts. This is called blanching; it stops the enzymes and kills bacteria, both of which can degrade flavor during storage.
Just drain them and cool them in ice water for about 10 minutes.
Combine the vinegar, sugar, onions, diced red pepper, and spices in large saucepan.
Bring the liquid to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
Distribute the Brussels sprouts (or cauliflower) onion and diced pepper among jars. Fill jars with pieces and pickling solution, leaving 1/2-inch headspace.
Put the jars in the canner and keep them covered with at least 1 inch of water. Keep the water boiling. Boil them for 10 minutes (or as directed by the table below if your altitude is greater than 1,000 ft).
Adjust lids and process according to the table below:
|Recommended process time for Pickled Cauliflower or Brussel Sprouts in a boiling-water canner.|
|Process Time at Altitudes of|
|Allowed Jar Sizes||0 - 1,000 ft||1,001 - 6,000 ft||Above 6,000 ft|
|Half-pints or Pints||10 minutes||15 minutes||20 minutes|
Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place (usually takes overnight) You can then remove the rings if you like, but if you leave them on, at least loosen them quite a bit, so they don't rust in place due to trapped moisture. Once the jars are cool, you can check that they are sealed verifying that the lid has been sucked down. Just press in the center, gently, with your finger. If it pops up and down (often making a popping sound), it is not sealed. If you put the jar in the refrigerator right away, you can still use it. Some people replace the lid and reprocess the jar, then that's a bit iffy. If you heat the contents back up, re-jar them (with a new lid) and the full time in the canner, it's usually ok.
When can you start eating the pickles? Well, it takes some time
for the seasonings to be absorbed into the pickles. That's at
least 24 hours, but for best flavor wait 2 weeks! Ah... the wait...
This document was adapted from the "Complete Guide to Home Canning,"
Agriculture Information Bulletin No. 539, USDA, revised 2009.
Reviewed November 2009.
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