First prepare your vegetables. Your vegetables will shrink a bit so make sure you cut them thick enough to still have a crunch – maybe ¼ to ½ inch thick. I peel my carrots using the Tovolo Tri-Peelers but leave the skin on the zucchini. If you are feeling extra particular, you can cut your vegetable on the Tovolo Precision Chef Cutting Mat – with its grid pattern and measurements, you can make sure that all the cuts you make are consistent. Place the vegetables into a 3-quart shallow pan or bowl.
I really encourage you to lightly toast all your spices together in a skillet before you add them to your vinegar. When you heat spices, especially whole spices like mustard seeds or juniper berries, you release the natural oils, thus infusing more flavor. If you go this route, toast your spices in a small skillet over medium heat for 3-4 minutes until they become aromatic and you can see the oils.
Once your vegetables are cut and your spices are toasted, use a medium saucepan over medium-high heat to boil the white vinegar, sugar, and spice mixture. When the sugar has dissolved and the vinegar is boiling, pour it over the vegetables and give it a good stir. Then all you have to do is wait. Once the vegetables have cooled to room temperature, they are ready to eat. I prefer once they are cooled to put them in the refrigerator for at least a day. It is best to store them in an airtight glass jar. I really like the glass clamped jars because they are easy to open and close as well as make a pretty presentation if you are sharing your vegetables with friends.
Tell us how you are eating these awesome pickled veggies – we would love to hear from you!