How to Make Pickled Eggs

How to make pickled eggs

If you’ve got hens, there’s a chance you have a lot of eggs on hand right now. Chickens lay so well at this time of year and it doesn’t take long to get several cartons stacked up. We think there’s nothing better than a pickled egg or two with lunch or with a beer as a late afternoon nibble. I make my own and it is really easy. Pickling eggs  takes only a few minutes to prepare and put in the fridge. They make for a great quick snack or even a side dish at dinner.

 

 

Make sure you are not using super fresh eggs. If you get farm eggs, just set them in your fridge for 2 weeks.

Here’s the reason:  the eggs need to be about 2 weeks old. Grocery store eggs are NEVER as fresh as those from the chicken farmer, so you can likely use storebought eggs right away. Your eggs need to be aged a bit because, if they are too fresh, you will take a bunch of the egg white away when you peel them. They’ll look awful too with gouges of white missing. You want them to be pretty and smooth.

Here’s the recipe!

INGREDIENTS:

12 extra large eggs

1 1/2 cups white vinegar

1 1/2 cups water

2 tablespoons pickling spice

1 cayenne or habanero pepper

1 clove garlic, crushed ( we use at least 5 cloves in each jar because we love it so much)

1 bay leaf

Place eggs in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool and peel.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, mix together the vinegar, water and pickling spice. Bring to a boil and mix in the garlic and bay leaf. Remove from heat.

Fill a quart mason jar with boiling water, let sit while the eggs are boiling. When ready to put eggs in jar, just dump the water. Put in your eggs and fill the containers with the hot vinegar mixture, seal and refrigerate 8 to 10 days before serving.

You have to give it time, so the pickly flavour can get right through the eggs. I put the date on the lid, so we know when they were made.

If you want to make the flavour milder, you may want to use 1 tbsp pickling spice and skip the pepper for your first batch. You can always spice things up more when you make your second batch, should you want them a bit zingier.

 

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How To Improve Clay Soil

Main Vegetable Garden in mid-August

Here in the Cariboo, we have clay based soil that we are always trying to amend. I was reading Carla Emery’s book this morning (Encyclopedia of Country Living) again. I am always reading something from this awesome book.

 

Main Vegetable Garden in mid-August

 

Here’s what she says about using buckwheat as a form of green manure….buckwheat should work very well for us as we have a shorter gardening season (Canada Zone 3) and it matures so quickly.

“Buckwheat grows especially well in moist, cool climates and cold areas, from Pennsylvania north into Canada. But is grows acceptably well in many other regions. Buckwheat is also a good grain choice if you have poor soil, especially if it’s sticky, dense clay, because buckwheat roots break that up and make it loose. Buckwheat is not a good choice if you have nitrogen-rich soil. It will grow to tall and be likely to fall over. (p.156)”

We have always used fall rye as a green manure for the garden. We sow it in the fall and in spring, once growth starts again, we till it in. This has been a big help for us and we also use it in harvested areas of the garden during the gardening season.

This is our first try at using buckwheat, but I’m really hoping it is successful.We can either till it under to improve the soil, or we can harvest the grain after 90 – 110 days. Buckwheat pancakes, anyone?

There is a “grain quiz” in Carla’s chapter on Grasses and Grains, and here’s a bit more info on buckwheat.If you just plowed up a pasture and want a plant that can wipe out any grass trying to come back, which grain should you plant? ANSWER = Buckwheat

Which grain can you plant in your garden in July, on ground free-up by harvesting vegetables, that will give you a good crop before frost? ANSWER= Buckwheat

In addition to the buckwheat and rye, we add as much manure to the garden as possible including pig, chicken and horse. Adding old bedding from animal pens is done as well.  The hay/straw breaks down and adds to allow air into the soil.

Each year the garden soil has improved and we can tell by the texture. It’s lighter and fluffier than last year, and last year was better than the year before. The more compost, green manure, straw etc we add – the better the soil will become.

 

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