One of my dad’s favorite snacks is pickled garlic. Seven years ago I brought him some back from Florence, Italy that he raves about to this day. Ahhh, the San Lorenzo market. Let me tell you, schlepping a pint jar of pickled garlic across northern Italy for two weeks is not fun.
For some reason he has been unable to find anything readily available lately. The stores that used to carry the product have taken it off the shelf in favor of things like exotic sounding vinegars or even more types of olives. How many types of kalamata olives does one store need to carry?
This seemed to be on those times when a little bit of elbow grease could go a long way. When my mother-in-law downsized her house recently, one of the items that I received was her old canning gear. This was a woman who had a garden of at least a quarter acre for the better part of a decade, so the volume of canning gear was impressive. Like a couple hundred jars, a pressure cooker, water bath canner…the whole nine yards.
So, two pounds of fresh, unpeeled garlic looks like this:
For ~$3 I thought I was in the money until I spent two hours peeling and cleaning:
Because Costco is the devil, I came across this the day after I peeled all of the garlic:
That would be three pounds of peeled garlic for ~$5. The fifty cents price differential seems worth my sanity. It just means I am going to be pickling approximately five pounds of garlic. My dad better be happy with the results.
I decided to go with a simple recipe based on the instructions from the good folks at Pick Your Own. Nothing too complex for my first attempt at canning and pickling.
Five pounds of garlic yielded me eight pint jars of pickled garlic goodness:
The process was deceptively simple and all of the jars sealed when I checked this afternoon after everything had cooled. For my first attempt I am feeling pretty good. The true test will come in a couple of weeks when my dad and I try the first cloves from one of these jars.
BTW, everyone who cans has told me to make sure that I label the jars:
I just went with the type of garlic and the date. I figured it was pretty self-explanatory when you looked at the jar what was inside.