We are lucky, our Zucchini has conveniently gone through phases of not producing, which has let me catch up with processing them. These lovely vegetables are so easy to grow, and impossible to give-away because everyone grows them because they are so easy to grow. So here is an alterative to baking with it.
- 8 cups shredded unpeeled zucchini
- 2.5 cups chopped onion
- 3 tablespoons canning salt
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped (I used some red banana peppers from our garden for a slight kick to the finished relish)
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped (I used some anaheim pepper for some more flavour)
- 2-3 cups white sugar (depending on how sweet you want the relish)
- 1-1/4 cups white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon ground mace or nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Bring a water bath canner to a boil in preparation of canning zucchini
In a large metallic bowl, mix the zucchini, onion and salt together. Use your hands to toss the mixture to ensure the salt is evenly coating the mixture. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Take the zucchini out of the fridge and rinse well with cold water. Place in a colander to drain, squeezing out any excess water and set aside.
Place the peppers, sugar, vinegar, cornstarch, nutmeg, turmeric, celery seed and pepper into a large pot. Stir to combine, then add the drained zucchini. Turn burner to medium-high heat until it has boiled. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes.
Pack relish into sterilized jars, making sure there are no spaces or air pockets. Fill jars all the way to the top and screw on lids.
Carefully lower jars into pot using a holder. Ensure that there is at least 2″ of water covering the jars while they process. Process for 20-30 minutes.
Remove the jars from the pot and place on a cloth-covered rack, several inches apart, until cool. Once cool, check the lids to ensure that the seal is tight and the snap lids are in a concaved and does not press down.
Chit Chat Portion
I love zucchini processed in many forms. Marinated and grilled on the BBQ, baked into a delicious loaf or cake, and now cooked down to a tasty relish. I need more ways to process the fast growing vegetable because it is impossible to give them away, and I absolutely cannot waste food. Tasting this relish just as I was placing it in jars, reminds me of a store-bought sweet relish, just slightly less sweet. I put the lower amount of sugar in because I didn’t want it overly sweet.
Last year, I had bought a sweet relish that unbeknownst to me was a sweet and spicy relish. It had hot peppers in it. It was a nice alternative to the standard sweet relish and could be used all the time as a replacement option since the heat was very mild. That relish inspired me to replace the red pepper and green pepper in this recipe with some hot options on this round of making it. I didn’t notice any heat to it when I tested it before canning, but that could develop as it sits. I guess we will see. I’m hoping for a mild heat so it becomes a sweet with heat relish.
As I continue to harvest the zucchini, I plan on enjoying some more grilled on the bbq or roasted with other veggies, but I will also continue to be on the hunt for other delicious uses. I found a zucchini soup recipe that I am going to have to try, but if you, the reader, know of any awesome zucchini recipes, please let me know!