Fermented foods are essential to the health of our gut and our ability to assimilate nutrients. Eaten a few times a week, in small amounts, they ensure we have an abundance of healthy bacteria in our intestines to smooth their work. These easy-to-make pickles fit the bill deliciously.
Makes 3 quarts
8-10 okra, 3-4 inches, rinsed well
6-8 carrots, cut into 3-4-inch x ½ (one half) sticks
12 cloves fresh garlic, peeled, left whole
3 cups apple cider vinegar
3 cups spring or filtered water
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon dill seeds
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
1 ½ tablespoons sea salt
1 tablespoon brown rice syrup
3, 1-quart jars with lids
Clean vegetables and towel dry them. Clean jars in very hot water and dry them.
Place vinegar, water, spices, salt and rice syrup in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook brine until the salt is dissolved, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat and allow brine to cool to just warmer than room temperature. Pour brine (with seeds) into each jar to completely cover the veggies. Allow to cool completely before sealing jars. Let pickles stand at room temperature for one day to allow flavors to develop before serving.
Cook’s Tip: Pickles will keep for about a month refrigerated. You can make these pickles shelf-stable and create a longer life for them by sterilizing the jars in boiling water and then once the veggies and brine are sealed, boiling the finished pickle jars which will seal them. The pickles will then keep for 6 months out of the refrigerator.