Recipe for Chowchow
When the first frost threatens to wipe out your garden or when you decide to plow under the garden, it’s time to make Chowchow. The best time to make Chowchow, however, is when you want more of this mouthwatering treat. Take out your grandmother’s 5-gallon crock or buy a 5-gallon food-grade plastic bucket with a tight-fitting lid from a fast-food restaurant, because this Chowchow recipe is worth trying.
8 to 12 medium heads green cabbage, shredded
2 cups canning salt
1?4 cup coarse ground black pepper
2 gallons Heinz white vinegar
8 pounds onion, shredded
6 pounds cucumbers, unpeeled, diced into 1?8-inch cubes
1 gallon dill pickles (Vlasic Kosher), reserve and store juice in refrigerator, dice pickles into 1?8-inch cubes
3 pounds garlic, chopped
20 to 30 fresh jalapeño peppers, diced (optional to include seeds, which will increase hotness)
40 to 60 plump, fresh serrano peppers, sliced thin
6 ounces dried pequin chiles, half ground and half left whole
6 ounces dried arbol chiles, ground
Place cabbage into 5-gallon crock or 5-gallon food-grade bucket. Pour salt and black pepper evenly on top. Cover with tight-fitting lid. Let sit at room temperature 24 hours. The cabbage will have wilted to 1?4 volume.
Boil vinegar and add to cabbage. Stir well. Add onion, cucumbers, dill pickles, garlic, jalapeños, serranos, pequins and arbol chiles. Stir well. Cover with tight lid and let sit at room temperature for 1 to 2 weeks. (Optional: Stir occasionally.) Taste to determine if you need to add some of the stored dill pickle juice to the chowchow.
Pack into clean quart jars. Wipe rims of jars with clean, wet cloth. Seal. Process in hot water bath or pressure cooker according to manufacturer’s directions. Yields 15 to 18 quarts.
Battling Root-Knot Nematodes in the Summer Garden
Photo by Lori L. Stalteri on Flickr In the Sacramento region of California, where I live, my spring and summer garden started out growing at a remarkable rate. I planted the second week in April and started getting zucchini by the end of May. Not that everyone is thrilled with an over-production of zucchini, but […]
Mini-Greenhouse: Protecting Winter Greens in our Desert Garden
Learn how we built our angled mini-greenhouse with scrap PVC, a strip of 6 mil plastic, and a few PVC fittings, all for less than $20.
Greenhouse Alternatives for Crop Protection
When it comes to extending the growing season, sometimes a greenhouse just isn’t the right choice. Learn about alternative crop protections with this handy guide.