Fool Proof Fermented Giardiniera


Fermented Giardiniera - A Healthy Classic

About The Recipe

Giardiniera or sottaceti  is a common Italian relish of pickled vegetables usually eaten as an antipasto with cheese and meats. The traditional recipe uses oil, vinegar, herbs and spices in the pickling process but our fermented version avoids the use of oil and vinegar making it a healthier, easier and dare we say, tastier option. A typical Italian giardiniera would comprise of bell peppers, celery, carrots, cauliflower and gherkins - a colorful display of garden veg for your eating pleasure all year long. Interestingly, overtime several variations using exotic ingredients especially in the US and Canada slowly developed. You now can find this tempting Italian condiment mild with a touch of flavor enhancing herbs or with the heat level cranked up with the inclusion of chilli, onion and garlic.

Whether you serve this assortment of sliced, flavored vegetables as a condiment, add them to salads or sandwiches, or enjoy as a healthy snack option, giardiniera is a great way to get the whole family to up their vegetable and probiotic intake.

Health Benefits

Apart from its terrific flavor and texture, this veg combo is packed with important health-giving vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals (chemicals derived from plants that have disease preventive properties.) Cut out the oil and vinegar and reap the awesome benefits that fermented foods impart. Full of probiotics and enzymes to aid digestion and flush out toxins, fermented foods taste amazing and moreover, get you feeling amazing.

Here are some advantages of regularly consuming fermented foods like our  Fool Proof Giardiniera recipe that you may be interested in learning about:

  • Helps fight against cancer.
  • High in Vitamin C and antioxidants such as Beta-carotene.
  • A rich source of dietary fiber.
  • Improves blood pressure and kidney function.
  • Keeps the ageing process at bay!

The B vitamins and vitamin K2 are boosted in vegetables that are naturally fermented; which in turn help to boost the gut’s good bacteria. Cultivating good bacteria can have some seriously positive effects on our health such as a reduction in depression and stress levels. Commercially produced pickles are unlikely to retain decent quantities of this beneficial bacteria, so getting your hands dirty in the kitchen is the only way to ensure your ferments are working for you.

Let’s Get started

This preserve delivers all the great flavor expected in a top-notch giardiniera with less salt than what is used in most other recipes. Giardiniera is naturally low in fat and carbohydrates and will add visual appeal and appetizing flavor and crunch to your meals. For best results use organic vegetables where possible.

What You Need

  • 1 Quart of water, non-chlorinated
  • 1 Tbsp. unrefined sea salt
  • 1 Small head or ½ head of cauliflower (about 3 cups small florets)
  • 1 Jalapeño, sliced into ringlets (remove seeds)
  • 8 Cloves garlic
  • 2 Medium carrots, peeled and sliced at angle 1/4" thick
  • 1 Bell Pepper (any color,) sliced lengthways
  • ½ White onion, sliced

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan heat water. Add salt and stir till dissolved. Cool to room temperature.
  1. Arrange all your vegetables in pre-sterilized, wide mouth, ½ gallon mason glass jar. 
  1. Carefully pour the cooled brine over the vegetables until completely covered but leaving 1 ½ inches of headspace.
  1. It is always recommended that you keep your veggies below the brine.  If you are looking for tips to keep your vegetables submerged check out our guide here: Tips on keeping your vegetables submerged
  1. Cover the jar with the Easy Fermenter Lid to ensure perfect fermentation results.
  1. Store in a cool, dark place (room temperature 60-70°F is preferred,) for 1 to 2 weeks.
  1. Once jar has been opened, move to cold storage. The flavor will continue to develop as the giardiniera ages.

It’s always tempting to open your jar of ferment sooner than the allotted time. Be patient - the end results will be well worth the wait! This giardiniera recipe is so versatile. Absolutely delicious served alongside pizza, bruschetta, grilled meats or diced up in your tuna or potato salad.  Buon Appetito!

Visual Guide

Variations To The Ferment

You can vary the vegetables based on what you have on hand. An awesome ferment to use up that last piece of celery stick or lonely carrot. For a mediterranean twist try adding in herbs de provence or thyme. If you like it spicey, more jalapenos or other chili varieties could be added to the mix. For once, listen to your gut :)