I’ve always been a fan of quick pickling, but chow chow takes it to a whole new level. You get the vinegar flavor, but it is subtle and sweet enough that you might want to take a second portion. Chow chow is actually a very popular item sold in Amish markets.
Chow chow is a blend of a lot of vegetables in a vinegar base. It’s a great side to a sandwich or even good used on a salad. Feel free to use anything that you have on hand or any vegetable that looks good at the market.
1/3 cup sliced black olives
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups white balsamic vinegar
1-2 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp Splenda
1 head cauliflower
1 bell pepper
4 celery ribs
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup white wine
Start by chopping all the vegetables. Blanch* the carrots and cauliflower in a large pot. In another large saucepan combine wine, salt, Splenda and vinegar. Heat liquid to a boil and remove from heat. Once vegetables and liquid have cooled, add both to big storage container. Next, add remaining vegetables and mix gently. Marinate overnight in the fridge and serve cold.
* Blanching vegetables is really a work of art. If you can master the technique, then you can make any everyday vegetable simply perfect.
The key to perfect blanching is an extra big pot of boiling water and lots of salt. For the best result you do not want the water to ever stop boiling. If volume of water is too low, then the water will stop boiling when vegetables are added. This would increase the cooking time and creates a more soggy product. Use lots of water and small batches of vegetables. The water should also be super salty so that when you taste it, it tastes like ocean water. This is the only time your vegetable will absorb any flavor.
Place vegetables in boiling water for about 3 minutes but keep an eye on them to avoid over cooking. Then spoon the vegetables out and place in a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process and to retain their natural color. The more ice the better. Allow the vegetables a few minutes to cool and then remove and drain.