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Fermented Jalapeño Pickles

These vibrant probiotic-rich jalapeño pickles are easy to make and pack a mean spicy punch. 
Prep Time 10 mins
Fermenting Time 7 d
Course Condiment
Cuisine American, Mexican
Servings 1 quart

Equipment

  • Quart-sized mason jar (1 litre)
  • Fermentation weight (or a small ziplock bag filled with water)
  • Airlock (optional)

Ingredients
  

  • 1 quart water
  • 2 tbsp fine sea salt mineral rich
  • 3 cups jalapeño peppers sliced 1/4-1/2" thick
  • 2 garlic cloves halved and crushed (optional)
  • grape leaves optional

Instructions
 

  • Bring the water to a boil and stir in the sea salt to dissolve. It's normal for there to be a bit of sediment when using mineral-rich sea salt. Allow it to cool until it's tepid.
  • Add the sliced jalapeños to a quart-sized mason jar. Add the garlic, if desired.
  • Fill the jar with brine, leaving enough headspace for the weight.
  • If they're available, cover the jalapeños with grape leaves, tucking them under the shoulder of the jar to help keep them submerged. The tannins in the grape leaves will also help to keep the peppers crisp.
  • Follow the jalapeños with a fermentation weight. If you don't have one of these, find a stone (wash it first!) or fill a small ziplock bag with water.
  • Place an airlock over the jar and close the jar. If you don't have an airlock, close the jar, but open the jar every day to release any gas that might be building up inside.
  • Set the jar on a baking sheet to protect against overflow, and allow it to ferment for the next 4-7 days. When the peppers have a tangy bite, remove the weight and grape leaves and transfer to the fridge. The jalapeño pickles will keep for a year.

Notes

  • Protect your hands! Wear gloves or coat your hands in olive oil to avoid "jalapeño hands".
  • Seeding the jalapeños is optional. If you leave them in the ferment, it will result in a spicier batch of jalapeño pickles.
  • If using coarse mineral-rich sea salt, increase the amount to 3 tablespoons.
  • There will be extra brine. Store it in the fridge for up to a week and use it to top off the ferment, if needed.
  • Plan on reserving a bit of jalapeño juice/brine to start the next batch of jalapeño pickles (they only need a splash). It will speed up fermentation and the peppers will be tastier!
Keyword Fermentation, Fermented Foods, Spicy Foods