Giardiniera is an Italian staple; a colorful medley of pickled vegetables marinated with oil, vinegar and spices. It makes terrific picnic fare and is quite versatile depending on what’s popping at the farmers market. Nibble with a glass of Bonterra Sauvignon Blanc or Merlot.
½ cup sea salt
4 cups water
3 cups cauliflower, cut into bite-sized florets
2 cups red bell pepper, cut into ½-inch strips
3 cups celery (the tender inner stalks work best), cut on a bias into 1-inch pieces
2 cups carrot, peeled and cut on a bias into 1-inch pieces
2 cups yellow onion, peeled and cut lengthwise into 1-inch wide wedges
2 bay leaves
3-4 dried red chile peppers (optional)
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 teaspoon whole allspice
1 cup white wine vinegar
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Heat the salt in the water in a pot until salt is dissolved. Remove from heat and pour over cauliflower, pepper, celery, carrot and onion. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, strain the vegetables and rinse well. Divide amongst quart sized mason jars along with the bay leaves, hot peppers, fennel seeds, coriander seeds and allspice. Whisk together vinegar and olive oil and divide between the two mason jars.
Cover tightly and gently shake to distribute the liquid. Refrigerate at least two days before serving.
Makes 2 quarts