We love chiles!
Serrano. Thai. Jalapeno. Ordono. Tara Humara. We grow many, many varieties and our favorite way to preserve our crop is by pickling. The end result tends to be a more tempered spice level and easy serving access for spooning over favorite dishes.
Steve spoons chiles over just about anything from eggs, to noodles. And this year may go down as one of our biggest harvests ever.
No matter what kind of chile you choose to pickle, this general recipe should do the trick.
In a sauce pan combine ::
5 cups vinegar - We've used both white and apple cider and both work well. Rice wine vinegar is also nice.
1 cup water
4 tsp canning/kosher salt
Optional spices: garlic cloves, peppercorn, and whatever else suits your fancy
(Optional 2 Tbs sugar - Some recipes call for sugar. We've used sugar once or twice, and have found that it's not necessary and we prefer the taste without)
Heat to a boil.
Pack your sterile jars with your clean diced or topped chiles. And then pour the vinegar/water solution into the jar, leaving a 1/4 head space at the top. Wipe the rims clean with a damp towel and place the lids and bands on, just finger tight. Process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes at 0 - 1,000ft, 15 minutes at 1,001-6,000ft, and 20 minutes above 6,001ft. Refrigerate after opening.
If you don't feel like fussing with the hot water bath, you can also make refrigerator pickles. When doing this you can use a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water with about a tsp of salt. Boil the mixture, pour over your chiles and keep refrigerated until you've eaten the last one.
Even Zinnia likes a little spice here and there. Last night, over our meal of kale and noodles she asked for "no chiles, just spice." Interpretation: I want that spicy vinegar, but no chunky chiles please.
*This recipe is only a guideline. Please read up on safe canning and pickling practices. This is but one resource.