Pickled jalapeño

Pickled jalapeño

A Year of Practiculture
6 x 600 ml jars
Rohan Anderson & Kate Berry

In the middle of winter I love to open these jars, the contents of which remind me of the summer that’s just passed. Each jar is loaded with jalapeños I spent a lot of time with. We’ve hung out a lot, all through the summer and into the autumn. Way back in spring I propagated the plants from seed. As they germinated and grew, I transplanted them into the warm poly tunnel. All summer I ensured they were watered and fed, until they were so loaded with fruit they required staking to prevent them toppling over under their own top-heavy weight. When the lid comes off a jar and I enjoy some of these pickled jalapeños in a pulled pork bun or on a taco, I can’t help but get nostalgic about the system to which I’ve committed my life – of providing for oneself. It’s a beautiful thing and so are these jalapeños.


Quantity Ingredient
1kg jalapeno chillies, sliced, seeds in, stems discarded
1 litre water
1 litre white vinegar
2 tablespoons salt

For each jar

Quantity Ingredient
1 bay leaf
1 garlic clove
1 teaspoon dried mountain pepper berries


  1. Pop a bay leaf, garlic clove and some pepper berries into each sterilised jar, then add the sliced chilli to the jars, leaving a gap of about 2 cm at the top.
  2. Combine the water, vinegar and salt in a large saucepan and bring to the boil (this dissolves the salt).
  3. Allow the solution to cool for a few minutes, then pour into each jar, ensuring you fill above where the chillies end.
  4. Place the rubber seals, lids and clips (or whatever vacuum-sealing lid you use) on the jars, then place the sealed jars in a large stockpot. Fill with hot tap water and bring to the boil. Boil for 1 hour.
  5. Turn the stove off and leave the jars in the pot until cool.
  6. Store the jars in a cool dark place such as a larder. They will keep for 6 months. Refrigerate after opening.
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