Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Dilly Carrots

"How are the carrots this year?"

Every year, my father-in-law asks this eagerly, and for the past couple of years I've had to disappoint him.  The carrot crop has either been thin or extremely late, which has meant that I didn't have high quality carrots to make his favorite recipe, dilly carrots.

This is a creation of mine born of a little experimentation, and it is a great thing to do with extra carrots, especially the sweet round Ox Hearts I am growing this year.  It is a nice alternative to freezing carrots, especially if you like to snack on them year round.

Dilly Carrots
(Note:  this recipe makes two pints of canning syrup, which you won't need if you have two pints of carrots.  I tend to make too much because I like to pack my carrots loosely in the jar.)

2 c. cider vinegar
2 c. sugar
1 head of fresh dill per jar (substitute 1/2 to 1 t. dill seed if your dill weed has finished for the season)
1/8 t. cloves
1 t. celery seed
2 pts. carrot rounds or sticks

Pack carrots and dill raw in sterilized jars.  Bring remaining ingredients to a boil, and fill jars.  Wipe threads and seal.  Process in water bath canner for 25 minutes.

The Analysis

Fast:  As far as a carrot preservation mode, this is faster than pressure canning and slower than blanching and freezing.

Cheap:  Normally, I compare things to their retail prices, but I have never seen pickled carrots on the store shelves.  Suffice to say, if you grow  your own carrots and dill, the rest is pretty cheap.

Good:  I think my father-in-law would agree, these are pretty yummy!
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