Here is a little pathetic fact about me that you might not have guessed: I have never owned a sharp knife.
It's hard to believe, I know, seeing as I cook as much as I do. I do own a knife sharpener that I purchased to remedy the situation a couple years back, but it was hardly worth the money spent. It's been bad. So bad that my own mother carries around an extra set of cooking knives in the trunk of her car (!!!) so that she can have "something decent to cut with" when called to duty at my house. For nearly five years I have been making mental notes to take my knives to the farmer's market on any given Sunday and have them professionally sharpened. I have never actually remembered...until yesterday!
Amen. Praise the cooking gods. Let's hope I don't end up in the ER with a cut down to the bone.
How did I make it so long without a sharp knife? It's a whole new experience being able to cut your food before you bruise it. Here's what I did with my newfound freedom and three pounds of unripened, green tomatoes at the season's end:
How excited would you be if you received a little jarred rainbow like this? For the most part, I followed this recipe but here is how I did it:
Pickled Green Tomatoes
• 2-3 pounds firm green tomatoes, any size will do
• 1 large onion, quartered or cut into 8 pieces
• 6 cloves garlic, halved lengthwise
• 3-4 bell peppers, mixed colors, seeded and each cut into 6 long pieces
• 6-7 fresh little peppers, halved lengthwise with scissors but left attached at the stem
• 6 small bay leaves
• 2-3 tablespoons coarsely crushed coriander seeds
Take all the above ingredients and divide them equally among 6 to 7 pint jars, carefully layering vegetables around the inside of the jar and giving consideration to color and texture layout. (Or not. But I'm a designer so you know I did!) Make sure everything is packed in snug tight, with a bit of headspace.
• 1-1/2 quart white vinegar
• 3/4 cup water
• 3 tablespoons honey
• 4-1/2 tablespoons salt
• 3 cinnamon sticks
Bring all brining ingredients to a boil on the stove and make sure honey and salt are completely dissolved. Pour brine into jars, completely covering vegetables and making sure there is 1/2" headspace. Seal with two part lids and process jars for 10 minutes in a hot water bath. If you prefer not to use the hot water bath, then store in the refrigerator. Let sit at least 10 days before tasting.
In two weeks I'll post the taste results in the comment section of this post.