July Can Jam – Zesty Zucchini Relish

Cooking in the pot.

Cucurbits.  They are some of my favorite things.  I remember lovely watermelon rind preserves from my childhood.  I thought that would be good to make.  My mother never would make them.  She said they were too much trouble.  When faced with the reality, the thought of peeling and chopping all that watermelon suddenly made me understand how she felt.

Zucchini Relish.  That sounded yummy to me.  All the vegetables, except the onion and carrots were grown in my yard.  I found the recipe in Well Preserved by Mary Ann Dragan.  If you only knew what I’ve been through this past week, you’d be amazed that I did this at all.  But in an effort to restore a sense of normalcy to my life, I set about to grate and chop a bunch of veggies into a tasty, spicy treat.  I have already eaten a big spoonful on my purple hull peas and it is very good.  So here goes with the recipe:

  • 6 cups grated, unpeeled zucchini
  • 1 cup grated carrot
  • 2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 – 3 finely chopped, seeded jalapeno peppers
  • 1/4 cup pickling salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups herb vinegar
  • 2 tsp celery seed
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp, each, cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric, and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 tsp dry English mustard

Combine the vegetables and pickling salt in a large bowl.  Mix well.  Cover with ice and let sit in refrigerator overnight. 

The next day, prepare the preserving jars.  Drain the vegetables, rinse well and squeeze out, using cheesecloth lined colander. 

Combine sugar and 1 1/2 cups of vinegar and spices in preserving pot.  Bring to a boil over high heat.  Stir in the drained vegetables.  Reduce the heat to medium and let simmer for 30 minutes, stirring often.  In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and mustard.  Pour in the remaining half cup of vinegar and stir ’til smooth.  Pour into relish.  Cook another 5 minutes, stirring, until liquid thickens.

Remove from heat.  Spoon into prepared jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space.  Wipe the rims and put tops on jars.  Process in hot water bath 15 minutes.  Makes 4 pint jars.

I love the color.


7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by stacey on July 23, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    This looks really yummy! We are homemade relish maniacs in our house – thanks for a new recipe!!


  2. This looks really good! I made a carrot relish back during carrot month and have used it all and this sounds like it would be really versatile as well! Can’t wait to try!


  3. […] Post-Industrial Eating and Café del Manolo both put up variations of Zucchini Relish  (Zesty Zucchini Relish and Zucchini Garden Pepper Relish respectively) that remind me a bit of my versatile Spicy Carrot Relish.  They are chock full of great flavors and I imagine it could be used on anything! […]


  4. This looks delicious. I love pickles and relishes and can’t wait to give this one a try.
    I’ve been talking about canning, lately and was delighted to find this blog. I look forward to giving some of your recipes a spin and reduce my use of commercially-processed, pesticide-laden foods.

    I stumbled upon your blog through facebook, as we are related through your husband. He is my mom’s (Carol Dumas Gray) first cousin, and his sister, Mary, is one of my favorite relatives. I’m sure we’ve met at some point, probably when I was small. I’m Jason Gray, by the way.


    • Posted by duckandjunebug on October 22, 2010 at 11:37 pm

      Hi Jason,

      I’m glad that you like the blog. This summer and fall have been incredibly busy and I have not had much time to keep it up. I need to get started back. We are doing pretty good. Yes, Mary is one of my favorite relatives, also. She and I were roommates in college. That is how I met Pat. I’ll take a look at your blog too. I’m sure we have met, probably when you were a small child. We have lived in Georgia since 1989 and we have not seen many of the cousins since then.



  5. I make a Zuchinni relish similar but with fewer ingredients and fewer spices. I took some to work with me and sold out. By Christmas I had made and sold three batches, there were some repeat customers. I also use the same recipe but exchange the zuchinni for yellow squash and only use the red bell peppers. It is colorful and taste the same. I just found your blog a few days ago and I like it a lot.


  6. I never knew how much stuff you could find online about this!
    Thanks for making this all easy to figure out


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: