Sep 8, 2010

Diary of a Wimpy Pickler

First, let me get something straight.  These are marinated, not pickled.
They can't be pickled.  I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but when it comes to pickling and canning I'm a SUPER giant wimp.  I want to try canning and pickling.  I do.  It seems like all of my internet friends are into canning so that makes me think that maybe there's something cool about it.

But then some jerk comes along and writes up a list of things to look out for when canning.  Like in my latest issue of Louisiana Cookin' Magazine.  Someone decided it would be a great idea to alert me about the dangers of home canning.  Right when I was about to finally decide to go ahead and do it.

So there I am looking forward to finally doing some canning/pickling.  Even went out and bought supplies.  Then I see the article on "Preserving Summer's Bounty: Pickling, Canning, and Preserving Techniques."  Now, I think most people would like to preserve summer.  I mean, the end of summer means the start of school.  Summer should last as long as possible.

But this article lists 21 points (yeah, I counted them) --dos and don'ts--of home canning.  And you just know if you mess up one of the 21...just one little bit, someone's gonna be blaming you for throwing that little "harmful bacteria" shindig.  It would be worse than having The Cheese Touch!

So I chickened out.  Again.  Instead of pickling the okra my dad gave me, I marinated it like he does.  It was easy.  But now every time I see the container of them in the fridge, I'm reminded of what a wimp I am.  Just can't get past the fact that I might poison family and friends.  Who wants to be known for that?

Anyone know what to do with a bunch of mustard seeds and jars?  The vinegar...well, I'll have very clean drains.

For this non-canning project, you'll need a large pot of simmering water, a colander or slotted utensil, Italian salad dressing, and okra.  You'll want small pods like the ones on the left.  The ones on the right are too big and will be tough and fibrous.
Those are better suited for long-cooking, like Smothered Okra.

My dad says the okra has to be par-boiled first.  But he couldn't tell me for how long.  He said he just checks.
He also said not to overdo it; they have to be just right.
Sigh.  Parents. 
I'm going to assume that I should cook them until they give just a little.

Drain then let them take a nice long soak in Italian salad dressing.
Covered in the fridge.
Just wanted to throw my own safety list out there.

These can be eaten right out the fridge as you walk by.
Or used as salad bling.

Unfortunately, they do have that classic okra slime.
Can't cook the snot out of them like for smothered okra.

This is linked to
What's On the Menu Wednesday @ Dining With Debbie

I don't really have to type up a recipe, do I?


  1. If it's any consolation, you aren't the only canning wimp. I am one too! I still think one day I might do it. I am sure you wouldn't be one of those who would miss one of the 21 steps, so I say go for it!. Thanks for introducing me to only the 3rd way I know of eating/preparing ocra. Going to have to try this some day. It's a good reason to buy some at a farmers market at some point.

  2. WOW! That looks wonderful! I love okra. Can't wait to give it a try.
    Thanks for the great recipe.

  3. Michelle- The very same thing happened to me in regards to canning/pickling. Last summer I went out and bought a bunch of stuff. I was ready to can jalapenos and some other stuff. Then I read a similar article like you read. The next day I returned all of it back to the store. No way was I attempting it!

    This okra recipe is fun and sure does make for some rather cool salad bling. You can come "bling" up my salad anytime- LOL!

  4. Michelle- you really should give canning a try, as long as you follow the directions in your canning book, you will be fine :D

    I have to say I've never had okra! DH's gma is southern so she's talked about that and lots of other southern food, maybe I should have her make me some.

  5. Sounds like me too. I am a CHICKEN, when it comes to getting started canning and pickling. I just need someone to give me that push off the cliff to get started ;D Great idea though for the marinated okra.

  6. There's always next year. Use the jars as water glasses and save them. You won't always be chicken.


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