The Canadian Food Experience Project: Pickled Carrots

Pickled Carrots
Pickled Carrots
For this round of the Canadian Food Experience Project, I bring you none other than pickled carrots! I must say, I was really looking forward to the October challenge; Preserving: Our Canadian Food Tradition. It forced me to finally get some pickling done, something I had neglected to do earlier in the harvest season. Luckily there were still some local baby carrots to be found at the grocery store on September 28. I know, I know, I left it a little late. But better late than never, right?
This was my second year participating in the art (yes, it’s definitely an art) of pickling/canning/preserving. I make a lot of quick-pickles throughout the year but it always feels special to crack open a jar of homemade pickles, especially come the holidays. Last year, I did mostly pickle pickles (with cucumbers, you know?) with a couple jars of pickled carrots thrown in there as well. To tell you the truth, I actually much preferred the pickled carrots, so this year, that’s all I made. I think it has to do with the fact that if you don’t pickle your own carrots, it’s hard to go out and buy them, whereas with pickles they are a staple in any grocery store and are thus less “exotic”. Or maybe it’s a reflection of the fact that generally, I prefer carrots over cucumbers. Anyways, I’ll try not to psychoanalyze things too much!
I can’t wait until Thanksgiving to taste the first jar!
Pickled Carrots
Pickled Carrots
Pickled Carrots
Pickled Carrots
Pickled Carrots

Pickled Carrots

Ingredients

5 pounds baby carrots
5 cups water
5 cups white vinegar
heaping 1/2 cup Kosher or pickling salt
5 bay leaves
5 cloves garlic
5 tsp. each black peppercorns and coriander seeds

Instructions

Sterilize 5 jars and 5 lids either in a dishwasher with a sterilization setting or simply by submerging them in boiling water for a couple of minutes. Keep in mind that you will need to have a large pot of boiling water ready to seal the jars once they are filled with carrots and pickling liquid.

Meanwhile, bring the vinegar, water and salt to a boil. Turn it down to a simmer and set it aside until you are ready to fill the jars. Then take each sterilized jar and pack it with 1 bay leaf, 1 clove of garlic, 1 tsp. black peppercorns, 1 tsp. coriander seeds and 1 pound of baby carrots. Squish the carrots in there so that they are nice and tight. Pour about 2 cups of pickling liquid into each jar. The carrots should be fully submerged. Put on your sterilized lids and tighten them until you feel resistance. No need to keep cranking them past this point, you want a little bit of room for the air to escape in order to allow the jars to seal. Once the lids are on, boil the jars for 15 minutes. With 5 jars I had to do this in 2 batches. Remove the jars from the boiling water however is most comfortable for you (AKA in whatever way you can without burning yourself – I tend to use a combo of tongs and a dish towel). I think you can actually go out and buy jar-lifter thingies but who really needs those right? We all know how to be resourceful in the kitchen!

Allow the jars to cool to room temperature before you pack them away in your basement and say bye bye for a while. If you notice that they haven’t sealed within the first few minutes, flip them upside down and forget about them for awhile. I find that usually does the trick! For maximum pickle-y-ness, wait at least a couple of weeks until you crack open a jar and taste your efforts.

7 thoughts on “The Canadian Food Experience Project: Pickled Carrots

  • October 7, 2013 at 2:38 am
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    Ah! So your picked carrots are not dilled. Mine are. Love dill with carrots. There is a booth at The Old Strathcona Farmer’s Market in Edmonton that has the best recipe for pickled carrots, ever. Hers are with dill, and sweet and sour and hot. Love that combination and wish I could find that recipe. Love mine, but I am the only one that does. Pity! Yours look yummy, too. Like you, I find homemade pickles really dress up a holiday table and cut the richness.
    🙂
    Valerie

    Reply
    • October 7, 2013 at 2:50 am
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      To be totally honest, I would have made them with dill but I opted not to buy any at the grocery store because it always ends up stinking up my fridge! And yes, they are a must at any holiday table!

      Reply
  • October 7, 2013 at 11:42 am
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    I used to do so much canning but as years have gone by I get more and more selective. I know I would appreciate a jar of these carrots.

    Reply
    • October 8, 2013 at 4:37 pm
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      It’s not difficult but it is definitely time consuming. I only made carrots this year but I would have loved to do more.

      Reply
  • October 10, 2013 at 10:59 pm
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    yes, I love pickled carrots so much more than cucumbers! Not sure why I haven’t bothered to put some up for such a long time…
    When my daughter was just over a year she made the jump from breast feeding to solid food. She hated baby food! And most of the vegetables she would eat were pickles…so I pickled everything! Asparagus, beans, carrots..she was so fussy!
    I wonder if I can still find some nice baby carrots somewhere?

    Reply
    • October 10, 2013 at 11:33 pm
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      Co-op still has the hutterite ones, or at least I know that the Crowfoot location does!

      Reply
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