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1.11.15

MIXED VEGETABLE PICKLES - CSALAMÁDÉ


Csalamádé is as varied as people are. My grandmother made fermented csalamádé, but then she treated it with borkénpor, stuff I don’t have access to. Other cooks pack csalamádé in jars and refrigerate them. They are probably good for many months, but I don’t have that kind of space in my fridge.


In this method, the hot water bath kills off the yeast that would ferment the vegetables and substitutes the yeast action with a brine. Whatever is your preference, the brine can be mildly sour or stronger. It is important to process the bottles for 30 minutes in a hot water bath to kill off all the yeast. My large dutch oven takes 3 bottles at a time. If you have canning jars that have been around for a few years, start the processing in cold water and wait for 15 minutes before removing the bottles from the hot bath. Sudden temperature change can break older bottles. 


Vegetable Mix:
1 large green cabbage, sliced
4 cups of sliced pickling cucumbers
4 bell peppers, any colour, chopped
4 very large carrots, sliced
8 green tomatoes, sliced
2 medium sized onions, sliced
2 tsp pickling salt
1 tsp caraway seeds
2 Tbsp peppercorns
1 tsp mustard seeds

Brine:
vegetable juice [from salting the vegetables]
4 cups water
1-1/2 cups vinegar
4 Tbsp sugar
4 Tbsp pickling salt


  • Wash the vegetables thoroughly and slice.
  • Place in a large bowl.
  • Sprinkle with pickling salt, caraway seeds, peppercorns and the mustard seed. 
  • Toss and let stand for 1 hour.
  • Squeeze the juice out of the vegetables, reserving the juice and the spices.
  • Pack the sterilized bottles with the vegetables 3/4 way up.
  • To make the brine, place the reserved vegetable juice in a pot. 
  • Add the water, vinegar and the seasonings.
  • Taste the brine; it should be pleasantly sour. This is a personal taste. You increase the water or vinegar or add more salt or sugar to suit personal preference.
  • Bring the brine to the boil.
  • Boil for 3 minutes.
  • Pour the hot brine in the bottles, leaving a generous head space.
  • Wipe the rims and place the softened lids on top.
  • Cap the bottles and place them in a canner or a large pot.
  • Fill the canner with cold water, and bring to a boil.
  • Process the jars for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the canner from the heat.
  • Wait for 15 minutes before removing the bottles from the hot bath. Sudden temperature change can break older bottles. 

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It began with posting a few recipes on line for my family. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has more than 1000 Hungarian and International recipes. What started out as a private project turned into a well visited blog. The number of visitors long passed the two million mark. I organized my recipes into an on-line cookbook. On top of the page click on the cookbook to access the recipes. I am not profiting from my blog, so my visitors will not be harassed with advertising or flashy gadgets. Feel free to cut and paste my recipes for your own use. Publication is permitted as long as it is in your own words and with your own photographs. However, I would ask you for an acknowledgement and link-back to my blog. This is to my old on-line friends and visitors: policing the comment section for spam and answering questions has become a chore. Good wishes to you all, happy cooking and keep on feeding your people with good food.

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