After polishing off the better part of a friend’s jar of zucchini pickles all by myself, I set about to make my own. Hers were a touch too sweet for my taste, so I halved the sugar listed in the recipes I found online. I also cut back on the turmeric because the massive amounts most recipes called for (1 tsp. or more) didn’t dissolve in the pickling liquid and just sat at the bottom of the jar, doing nothing. Finally, I cut my zucchini in largish pieces—the better to spear them with a toothpick as a cocktail snack. The chunks/slices/(however you cut them) are wonderful in salads, as well
1 lb. / 500 g. zucchini
1 small onion
2 Tbs. / 30 g. salt
1 1/2 cups / 375 ml. white wine or rice vinegar
½ cup / 120 g. sugar
2 tsp. mustard seeds
1 tsp. pink peppercorns
1 tsp. whole coriander seeds
½ tsp. ground turmeric
1 bay leaf, optional
1/2 cup / 250 ml. water
Cut the zucchini and onion into thick-ish slices or small chunks—depending on the size and shape of your zucchini. If you have a monster squash, scrape out the hard seeds first, and discard. Place the pieces in a large bowl, and toss with the salt. Let stand 2 hours.
Meanwhile, combine the vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds, peppercorns, coriander, and bay leaf in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil. Boil 30 seconds, or until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat, and stir in the water. Cool the brine to room temperature.
Drain the moisture from the zucchini and onion pieces and pack them into clean jars. Give the brine a stir, then pour it over top the zucchini until the jars are full. Distribute the spices among the jars. Seal, and either refrigerate, or process in a water bath (boil the jars 10 minutes in a large pot lined with a cake rack). Refrigerated pickles will keep a week; processed pickles will keep up to a year. Makes about 2 cups of pickles