Zucchini relish is a vegetable relish made with zucchini squash. It can be used as a condiment on a wide variety of foods, including sandwiches, roasts, Indian food, and so forth. Some shops sell zucchini relish, and it can also be made at home, for people who are comfortable with the home canning process. Zucchini relish also makes an excellent homemade gift, for people who are trying to think of low-cost presents for the holidays.
This relish is an excellent way to use up zucchinis from the garden. Zucchini plants are notorious for producing vegetables in large volume, and it can be difficult to use them all without getting heartily sick of zucchini. By making zucchini relish, cooks can set some zucchini aside for the winter, when the vegetable may be greatly appreciated. Zucchini relish also softens large zucchini, rendering them palatable.
For every six pounds (roughly three kilograms) of vegetables, three cups (700 milliliters) of vinegar should be used, along with 1/3 cup (around 100 grams) of pickling salt, and three cups (600 grams) sugar. Some cooks use as much as six cups (1,200 grams) of sugar for a much sweeter form of zucchini relish. The vegetables should be cooked for 15 to 30 minutes, until they start to soften and the mixture thickens. Some cooks add cornstarch to ensure that the relish thickens.
In addition to the star ingredient, zucchini relish usually includes onions, sweet peppers, and sometimes hot peppers as well. The vegetables are grated, chopped, or minced before being sprinkled with the pickling or canning salt, allowed to sit overnight, and then drained. While the vegetables drain, the mixture of vinegar, sugar, and spices can be brought to the boil to cook the zucchini. Some spicing ideas include celery seed, turmeric, nutmeg, cracked black pepper, and paprika. Cooks can also use generic pickling spices from the store.
After the zucchini relish has been cooked, it can be ladled into jars and processed in a canning bath. On the following day, the jars should have tightly inverted lids, indicating that the seal has taken, and they will be safe for up to one year. If the lids are loose or they have popped out, the jars need to be reprocessed. Once opened, a jar of zucchini relish will last for up to one month in the fridge.