Jun 01 2007

Tomatoes in spiced vinegar

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I have never preserved cherry tomatoes in spiced vinegar before so this year is a bit of an experiment. I filled sterilised kilner jars with tiny, freshly picked tomatoes which I pricked with a wooden cocktail stick. I added basil leaves, lemon zest and black peppercorns. Then I covered them with hot spiced vinegar. I push the tomatoes down with the handle of a wooden spoon to get rid of air pockets and made sure the top ones were well covered with vinegar. Then I covered them with a wax disc and sealed the jars at once. I used new seals on the kilner jars. .

To spice the vinegar I brought distilled, clear white vinegar and a little clear apple juice to the boil, took it off the heat and infused it with a bag of mixed spice; cloves, black pepper corns, dried chilli, coriander seed, allspice berries; you can make your own mix. But one thing I have discovered is if you boil the vinegar with the spices it will go cloudy and spoil the tomatoes. So I let it cool, take out the spice bag, reheat and pour over the tomatoes.

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