Autumn Aubergine Antipasto
I have a glut of eggplants at the moment so thought I’d adapt my spring pickle with vegetables that are available now. Any vegetables can be substituted but for safety stick to the same ratios of vegetables, vinegar and wine. The usual rule for pickling is 50/50 vinegar to water (but wine is substituted for water here).
1 kg aubergine
1 green capsicum
2 sweet banana capsicums
1 red onion sliced
Some chili to taste (spicy red or sweet green)
500 g white vinegar
500 g white wine
300 g sugar or sugar cane
6 cloves of garlic
Prepare the vegetables: slice aubergine into rings and quarter, chop capsicum into wedges, slice chili into strips, half onion and slice into rings. Place in colander, cover with salt and leave for 2 hours.
Meanwhile combine vinegar, wine, sugar, garlic, and rosemary in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer over low heat 5 minutes, to flavour the mixture. Leave to cool.After vegetables have rested with salt for two hours blanch them by pouring three jugs of boiling water over them. Leave to drain.
In the jar: place a little of the cooking liquid (or extra virgin olive oil) on the bottom of the pot, arrange the vegetables in layers, gently pressing them with your hands, adding always a little cooking liquid. Make sure there are garlic cloves and rosemary sprigs in each jar. When the jar is full, beat gently on the work surface so that the liquid fills every space. If you see air bubbles, move the vegetables along using a spatula.
Place lids on jars, place in a big pot, and cover with cold water (at least 5 cm over the lids) and sterilize by boiling for 20/30/40 minutes, depending on the size of the jars. If using Fowlers Preserving kits follow their methods.
Recipe makes about 6 no 14 Fowlers jars (350ml each.)