How to Make Pickled Courgettes: A Clear and Knowledgeable Guide

Pickled courgettes are a delicious and versatile condiment that can be enjoyed as a side dish or added to sandwiches and salads. Making your own pickled courgettes is easy and requires only a few simple ingredients. In this article, we will guide you through the process of making pickled courgettes, from selecting the right courgettes to storing the finished product.

Understanding courgettes is the first step in making pickled courgettes. Courgettes, also known as zucchini, are a type of summer squash that are harvested when they are young and tender. They have a mild, slightly sweet flavor and a tender texture that makes them ideal for pickling. When selecting courgettes for pickling, it is important to choose ones that are firm and free of blemishes.

To make pickled courgettes, you will need a few simple ingredients, including vinegar, sugar, salt, and spices. You will also need a large jar or container for pickling and a sharp knife for slicing the courgettes. The pickling process involves slicing the courgettes and packing them into the jar with the vinegar and spices. The courgettes are then left to marinate in the vinegar mixture for several hours or overnight. Once pickled, the courgettes can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks.

Key Takeaways

  • Pickled courgettes are a delicious and versatile condiment that can be enjoyed as a side dish or added to sandwiches and salads.
  • To make pickled courgettes, you will need firm and blemish-free courgettes, vinegar, sugar, salt, and spices.
  • Pickled courgettes can be stored in the refrigerator for several weeks and make a great addition to many dishes.

Piero’s Recipe from the video:

  • 1.5kg Courgette / Zucchini
  • 1 Large White Onion
  • 15-20 Basil Leaves
  • 3-4 Bay Leaves
  • 300ml White Vinegar
  • 400ml Olive Oil
  • 3-4 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons white Sugar
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Pickled Courgettes

Understanding Courgettes

Courgettes, also known as zucchini, are a type of summer squash that belongs to the same family as pumpkins and cucumbers. They are a versatile vegetable that can be eaten raw or cooked in many different ways, including grilling, roasting, frying, and pickling.

When selecting courgettes, it is important to choose ones that are firm and free of blemishes or soft spots. Courgettes should also be small to medium in size, as larger courgettes tend to have a tougher texture and more seeds.

Courgettes are low in calories and high in nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin A, and potassium. They are also a good source of dietary fiber and antioxidants, which can help protect the body against disease.

When pickling courgettes, it is important to slice them thinly and evenly to ensure that they absorb the pickling solution evenly. It is also important to use a pickling solution that is high in acidity, such as vinegar, to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

Overall, courgettes are a healthy and versatile vegetable that can be enjoyed in many different ways, including as a pickled side dish.

Selecting the Right Courgettes

When it comes to making pickled courgettes, selecting the right courgettes is crucial for the overall taste and texture of the final product. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing courgettes for pickling:

Size

It is best to choose small to medium-sized courgettes for pickling. Larger courgettes tend to have more seeds, which can make the pickled courgettes mushy. Small to medium-sized courgettes are also easier to slice thinly, which is important for even pickling.

Firmness

Choose courgettes that are firm and have a smooth, unblemished skin. Avoid courgettes that are soft or have wrinkled skin, as they may be overripe and have a mushy texture after pickling.

Color

Courgettes come in different colors, including green, yellow, and white. While the color of the courgettes does not affect the taste or texture of the pickled courgettes, it is important to choose courgettes that have a consistent color throughout. Avoid courgettes that have yellow or brown spots, as they may be overripe or have been damaged during transportation.

Organic or Conventional

When selecting courgettes for pickling, consider choosing organic courgettes. Organic courgettes are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, which can leave a residue on the skin of the courgettes. However, if organic courgettes are not available, conventional courgettes can also be used for pickling.

By keeping these factors in mind, you can select the best courgettes for pickling and ensure a delicious and crunchy final product.

Ingredients Needed

Pickled courgettes are a tangy and flavorful side dish that can be enjoyed with a variety of meals. To make this dish, there are a few ingredients that are needed.

First, you will need courgettes, also known as zucchini. The amount of courgettes needed will depend on the recipe being followed, but typically around 500g to 1kg of courgettes are used. These can be sliced or cut into batons, depending on your preference.

Next, you will need vinegar. Cider vinegar is a popular choice, but white wine vinegar or rice vinegar can also be used. The amount of vinegar needed will depend on the recipe, but typically around 500ml to 1 litre of vinegar is used.

Sugar is another key ingredient in pickled courgettes. Golden caster sugar is a popular choice, but white granulated sugar can also be used. The amount of sugar needed will depend on the recipe, but typically around 100g to 200g of sugar is used.

To add some flavor and spice to the pickled courgettes, various spices can be used. Mustard powder, mustard seeds, celery seeds, and dried chili flakes are commonly used. Other spices like ground turmeric, cumin seeds, and pickling spice can also be used.

Finally, salt is needed to help draw out the moisture from the courgettes. Non-iodized salt is recommended, and around 2 tablespoons of salt per 500g of courgettes is typically used.

Overall, the ingredients for pickled courgettes are simple and easy to find at most grocery stores. By combining these ingredients in the right amounts, you can create a delicious and tangy side dish that pairs well with a variety of meals.

Preparation of Courgettes

Washing and Drying

Before pickling courgettes, it is important to wash them properly. This is to remove any dirt or residue that may be present on the surface. To wash courgettes, place them under running water and gently rub them with your hands. If the skin is particularly dirty, a vegetable brush can be used to scrub it lightly. Once washed, pat them dry with a clean towel or paper towel.

It is important to make sure that the courgettes are completely dry before slicing them. This is because excess moisture can affect the texture and flavor of the pickles. To dry the courgettes, place them on a clean towel and let them air dry for a few minutes. Alternatively, use a paper towel to pat them dry.

Slicing

After washing and drying the courgettes, the next step is to slice them. It is important to slice the courgettes evenly so that they pickle evenly. A mandolin or a food processor with a slicing blade can be used to slice the courgettes quickly and evenly. Alternatively, a sharp knife can be used to slice them by hand.

When slicing the courgettes, it is important to remove the ends and discard them. The courgettes can then be sliced into rounds or batons, depending on personal preference. For pickled courgettes, it is recommended to slice them thinly, about 1/4 inch thick.

In summary, preparing courgettes for pickling involves washing them thoroughly and drying them properly before slicing them evenly. By following these steps, you can ensure that your pickled courgettes turn out perfectly every time.

Pickling Process

Preparing the Brine

Before starting the pickling process, it is important to prepare the brine. Brine is a mixture of vinegar, water, salt, and sugar that is used to preserve the courgettes. The ratio of vinegar to water can vary depending on personal preference. Some people prefer a more sour taste, while others prefer a milder taste. A common ratio is one part vinegar to one part water.

To make the brine, combine vinegar, water, salt, and sugar in a large pot. Heat the mixture until the salt and sugar are dissolved. The brine should be brought to a boil and then removed from heat.

Pickling the Courgettes

Once the brine is prepared, it is time to pickle the courgettes. First, wash the courgettes and slice them into thin rounds. A mandolin or food processor can be used to make the slicing process easier and more consistent.

Next, place the courgette slices in a large bowl and sprinkle salt over them. Mix the courgettes and salt together and let them sit for about an hour. This process draws out excess moisture from the courgettes and helps them retain their crunchiness.

After an hour, rinse the courgettes thoroughly with cold water and pat them dry with a clean towel. Then, pack the courgettes tightly into sterilized jars. Add any desired herbs or spices, such as garlic or dill, to the jars.

Finally, pour the brine over the courgettes, making sure that they are completely covered. Seal the jars and let them sit at room temperature for at least 24 hours before moving them to the refrigerator. The pickled courgettes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Storing the Pickled Courgettes

Once the pickling process is complete, it’s time to store the pickled courgettes properly. Proper storage will ensure that the pickled courgettes retain their flavor and texture for as long as possible.

Storing in Jars

The most common way to store pickled courgettes is in jars. Make sure the jars are clean and dry before use. The jars should be airtight to prevent air from entering and spoiling the pickled courgettes.

To store the pickled courgettes in jars, follow these steps:

  1. Let the jars cool to room temperature after the pickling process is complete.
  2. Fill the jars with the pickled courgettes and the pickling liquid, leaving about 1/2 inch of headspace at the top.
  3. Seal the jars tightly with the lids and store them in a cool, dark place.

Refrigeration

Pickled courgettes can also be stored in the refrigerator. This is a good option if you plan to consume the pickled courgettes within a few weeks.

To store pickled courgettes in the refrigerator, follow these steps:

  1. Transfer the pickled courgettes and the pickling liquid to a clean, airtight container.
  2. Seal the container tightly and store it in the refrigerator.
  3. Consume the pickled courgettes within 2-3 weeks.

Freezing

Pickled courgettes can also be frozen for long-term storage. Freezing the pickled courgettes will change their texture slightly, but they will still be delicious.

To freeze pickled courgettes, follow these steps:

  1. Transfer the pickled courgettes and the pickling liquid to a freezer-safe container.
  2. Seal the container tightly and label it with the date.
  3. Store the container in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Pickled courgettes are a delicious and versatile addition to any meal. By storing them properly, you can enjoy their tangy flavor for months to come.

Serving Suggestions

Pickled courgettes are a versatile condiment that can be enjoyed in many different ways. Here are a few ideas for serving and enjoying pickled courgettes:

  • As a side dish: Pickled courgettes make a great side dish for grilled meats, fish, or vegetables. They add a tangy, slightly sweet flavor that complements the richness of the main dish. Simply serve a few slices of pickled courgettes alongside your main course.
  • In a sandwich or wrap: Pickled courgettes can add a nice crunch and flavor to a sandwich or wrap. Try adding a few slices to a turkey or ham sandwich, or use them as a topping for a veggie wrap.
  • On a cheese board: Pickled courgettes pair well with a variety of cheeses, such as cheddar, brie, or goat cheese. Arrange a few slices of pickled courgettes on a cheese board for a colorful and flavorful addition.
  • In a salad: Pickled courgettes can add a nice zing to a salad. Try adding a few slices to a green salad with some cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, and a balsamic vinaigrette.
  • As a snack: Pickled courgettes make a great snack on their own. Simply grab a few slices from the jar and enjoy them as a quick and flavorful snack.

Overall, pickled courgettes are a versatile and delicious condiment that can add flavor and texture to a variety of dishes. Experiment with different serving ideas to find your favorite way to enjoy them.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some recipes for crunchy courgette pickle?

There are many recipes available for making crunchy courgette pickle. One popular recipe involves thinly slicing the courgettes and shallots, and then soaking them in a mixture of salt, sugar, and vinegar. Other recipes may include additional ingredients such as garlic, mustard seeds, or red chili peppers. Experiment with different recipes to find the one that best suits your taste.

How can I make courgette and apple chutney?

To make courgette and apple chutney, start by peeling and chopping the apples and courgettes into small pieces. Then, cook them in a mixture of vinegar, sugar, and spices until they are soft and tender. Once the mixture has thickened, transfer it to sterilized jars and store in a cool, dark place until ready to use.

What are some ways to preserve courgettes?

There are several ways to preserve courgettes, including pickling, canning, and freezing. Pickling involves soaking the courgettes in a mixture of vinegar, salt, and sugar, while canning involves sealing the courgettes in jars with a hot water bath. Freezing involves blanching the courgettes in boiling water before freezing them in airtight containers.

Can courgettes be pickled?

Yes, courgettes can be pickled. Pickling involves soaking the courgettes in a mixture of vinegar, salt, and sugar, which helps to preserve them and give them a tangy flavor. Pickled courgettes can be used as a side dish or added to sandwiches, salads, or other recipes.

What are some good pairings with courgettes?

Courgettes pair well with a variety of flavors, including lemon, garlic, basil, and mint. They can be used in a variety of recipes, including salads, pasta dishes, and stir-fries. For a simple and delicious side dish, try sautéing sliced courgettes with garlic and olive oil.

How do you make piccalilli with courgettes?

To make piccalilli with courgettes, start by chopping the courgettes into small pieces and soaking them in salt water for several hours. Then, cook the courgettes with vinegar, sugar, and spices until they are tender. Once the mixture has thickened, transfer it to sterilized jars and store in a cool, dark place until ready to use. Piccalilli with courgettes can be used as a condiment for sandwiches, burgers, or other dishes.

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Cooking With An Italian

Ciao I am Piero coming all the way from Puglia Italy. I created this site to bring my love of food to all, hope you enjoy.