If you've never tried hot giardiniera (pronounced jar-dih-NAIR-uh), I urge you to immediately. I first fell in love with the condiment -- made with pickled vegetables and spices -- when I tried it on Pappa Geno's ridiculously delicious Wicked Philly. It even prompted me to pick up a jar and make my own (slightly/barely lighter) version of the cheese steak at home. Well, that jar has since been demolished and because I'm a bit of a if-I-can-find-the-ingredients-I-can-just-make-it-myself type of asshole, I've decided to make an at-home version of the Italian-American relish.
Filled with pickled carrots, cauliflower, zucchini, garlic, spices and hot peppers, this easy-to-do hot giardiniera makes the perfect briny and zesty companion to sandwiches, salads, pizzas, pastas, chili, tacos, hot dogs, chicken, steaks, seafood and more. What I'm saying is, outside of dessert, this stuff is pretty much good on anything. Add it to your next meal...and I dare you not to like it.
Here's the recipe:
Ingredients yields 3-4 cups
Add prepared vegetables to a large bowl and sprinkle with salt. Mix until combined and add in enough water to completely cover. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 12 hours.
Drain the vegetables from the brine and rinse to remove excess salt. In a large bowl, add the minced garlic, oregano and crushed red pepper. Stir in the vinegar and then slowly whisk in the oils.
Add the reserved vegetables to the oil mixture and toss to combine. Cover the bowl and allow to marinate overnight and up to 48 hours before adding to jars. Alternatively, you can add the mixture to the jars to marinate immediately.
The spicy, pickled vegetables will keep in the fridge for about two to three weeks and are delicious on anything and everything, especially the Wicked Philly.