Learning to Preserve: Jamaican Pickled Pepper Sauce

PUBLISHED ON: 08.04.2013

My friend brought me a jar of her homemade Jamaican pickled pepper sauce.   The timing was perfect.

I was attempting for what seemed to be the hundredth time trying to learn how to prepare winter collard greens.  My last attempt included adding a bit of this pepper sauce to the pot of greens that were simmering on the stove….And that was beginning of my journey to a decent pot of collards.

I had an abundance of hot peppers this summer from the garden and there was no doubt that I was going to attempt to replicate this hot vinegar sauce.  There is probably a thousand varieties of how this pepper sauce might be prepared based on what vegetables and peppers may be available. This is only one version, and I encourage you to experiment.

There is going to be plenty of opportunities to add this packed flavored vinegar to add subtle heat and flavor. There is a good reason why this is a staple pepper sauce in a Caribbean kitchen-It is because it is so damn good.

A blend of peppers that included jalapeño,  habaneros and a Mexican hot red peppers. Sliced carrot, onion, garlic cloves and fresh thyme sprigs.
A fiery blend of ingredients when brought together gives a kick to everything from grilled meats, legumes, soups, stews, chills and sauces.
Jamaican Pickled Pepper Sauce
Makes approximately 3 quarts
Recipe from Frederica Schmidt

3 quarts distilled white vinegar
20-25 hot peppers, any variety, (jalapeño, scotch bonnets, cayenne, habaneros)
*note- be extra careful when working with hot peppers.  Wear gloves or plastic bags over your hands, and don’t touch your eyes!
2-3 mild peppers, any variety, chopped (bell peppers, banana)
2 carrots, cleaned peeled and sliced into rounds
6 fresh cloves of garlic, peeled and slightly smashed to release the flavors 
2 white onions, sliced thinly in halves
Several fresh sprigs of thyme
Clean, sterilized mason jars
1.  Heat vinegar in a saucepan to a simmering boil.
2.  Pack a blend of the peppers, carrots, onion, garlic and thyme into clean sterilized jars.
3.  Pour the hot vinegar over the mixture to about 1/2-inch head space, and seal jars.
4. Process jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.  Remove.  Cool and store in your refrigerator for up to 2 months.


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