Zucchini Relish

25 Jan

This is a VERY prominent fixture in my childhood memories. This stuff is FANTASTIC. My grandmother would make it once a year, jarring enough to last us until the next fall. She’s spend hours in the basement (where it was cool), grinding away at her hand grinder, going through huge amounts of zucchini. There was always plenty – the garden usually exploded with them. That’s what I like about Maine – you cast down the seeds, and barely need to tend to anything before you have an explosion of veggies.

I’d put this on my hamburgers and hot dogs, and on my “nice” ham and cheese sandwiches. My grandmother would mix it into her potato salad. Aw, man, this stuff is SO GOOD, I’ll have to make it sometime. But I’ll have to get a grinder.

12 cups ground zucchini
4 cups ground onions
1 red pepper, ground
1 green pepper, ground
5 tbsp salt

2 1/2 cups cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
6 cups sugar

3/4 tbsp corn starch
1 tbsp dry mustard
3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
3/4 tsp. ground tumeric
1 1/2 tsp. celery seed
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Mix ground veggies with salt and sit over night in an enamel kettle (big ol’ pot with a lid). In a.m., rinse with cold water. Mix the cider vinegar with the water, add to sugar and stir until dissolved. Pour over veggies. Make a paste of the corn starch, dry mustard, ground nutmeg, ground tumeric, celery seed, and black pepper – adding just enough water for a paste consistency. Add to the veggies. Stir well.

Bring the pot to a boil, cook and stir over moderate heat for 30 minutes. Can in jars at once.

Here is some information on canning jars, the hot packing method used here, and the boiling water bath canning procedure. Also, About.com has a whole section dedicated to canning.

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