Hot Italian Giardiniera

Hot Italian Giardiniera
Hot Italian Giardiniera

This is a pickling recipe, not a fermenting recipe. If you’re from Chicago, you may recognize this as the over sized version of the same kind of thing that is usually chopped up super thin to put on Italian sandwiches. In this version, our vegetables are bigger and make for good snacking. Slice them up thin yourself for that Chicago style relish for sandwiches and hot dogs of all sorts.

The brine might seem extra salty, but you’ll probably be salty because you won’t get to eat these delicious vegetables right away. Don’t worry, the saltiness of the brine washes off when you drain the vegetables and rinse them. Of course they will be a little salty, but they will also be full of a bunch of other flavors. There’s no real cooking involved in this recipe, so it is a perfect for a quick Thursday night prep, since it can be enjoyed on Saturday with a lazy afternoon lunch or at a cookout. Two days of brining time is perfect for the optimal flavor, but if you really must try them after a day, you’ll find that they taste pretty good then, too.

We used white vinegar in our recipe and you really shouldn’t substitute that. The white vinegar lets the vegetables maintain their coloring, whereas something like apple cider vinegar might stain them, and would taste quite different. White vinegar will give you the cleanest flavor. Our taste testers really enjoyed the vegetables. Pair them with a starch and a meat for a quick meal, or eat them alone, by the handful, standing in front of your fridge at one in the morning. Don’t worry, we won’t judge.

 Print Recipe

Prep Time: 45 min.
Cuisine: Italian
  • 2 Green Bell Peppers, large dice
  • 2 Red Bell Peppers, large dice
  • 4 Jalapeno Peppers, sliced into rings
  • 4 Serrano Peppers, sliced lengthwise on bias
  • 2 Celery Stalks, sliced lengthwise on the bias
  • 1 Medium-Large Carrot, sliced
  • 1 Vidalia Onion, diced
  • ½ Small head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ Cup Sea Salt
  • 2 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 5 ounce jar pimento stuffed green olives, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups White Distilled Vinegar
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Water to cover
  1. Prep vegetables.
  2. Place the green and red peppers, jalapenos, serranos, celery, carrots, cauliflower, and onion in a large bowl. Stir in salt, and fill with enough cold water to cover. Cover and refrigerate over night.
  3. Drain and rinse vegetables. Place vegetables in a clean bowl and add garlic, Italian Seasoning, Red Pepper Flakes, Black Peppercorns, olives, olive oil, and vinegar and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 2 days.