Every August, I find ourselves flush with an abundance of zucchini in the garden! Usually way too many for us to eat ourselves. Then I remember just tossing in those few extra zucchini seeds back in the spring just because we had them! You'd think I would learn after my years of planting a garden that only a handful of zucchini plants will produce more than enough for us!
Despite the abundance, I am always thankful to have zucchini to shred & freeze for winter zucchini chocolate loaf, muffins, and cake. And to have zucchini to make a batch of our favorite zucchini relish!
This year we included a jar of our favorite zucchini relish in the September edition of the Charcuterie Experience kits! This relish is yummy paired with cheeses, breads, and meats for a charcuterie spread. It's also our favorite thing to spread on a sausage dog (we love farmer sausage, rosemary garlic sausage, or a jalapeno smokie).
I am a picky eater and don't love zucchini on it's own (like in a stirfry or as a side dish) but I don love how the zucchini turns out in this preserve!
This recipe has been adapted from the original Bernardin recipe I had in an older edition of the Bernardin preserving cookbook (found on Amazon here).
Zucchini Relish Recipe
- 12 cups grated zucchini
- 4 cups diced onions (white or yellow)
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 1/3 cup coarse or pickling salt (non-iodized)
- 2 1/2 cups white sugar
- 1 tablespoon nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cayenne
- 2 1/2 cups white vinegar
- 4 tablespoons prepared horseradish
In a large metal or glass bowl, combine zucchini, onion, peppers, and salt. Stir to combine. Cover and let stand 12 hours on the counter (in a cool area).
Drain and rinse vegetables, pressing out excess moisture.
Place vegetables in a large stainless steel saucepan and add the sugar, spices, vinegar, and horseradish. Bring mixture to a boil, then turn down to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 45 minutes until thickened.
Meanwhile, prepare 6 x 500 mL canning jars by placing clean jars in a hot water bath canner and bringing to a simmer. Place the rings and seals in a separate saucepan covered with water. Heat (not boil) the rings and seals.
Remove one glass jar from the water bath and fill with zucchini mixture up to a 1/2 inch from the top. Using a non-metallic utensil like the opposite end of a wooden spoon or spatula), remove air bubbles. Wipe the rim of the jar to remove any residue. Top with a seal and screw on the lid to fingertip tight. Repeat with each jar.
Place the jars into the canner and bring water to a boil. Boil the filled jars for 15 minutes. Remove each jar from the canner without tilting the jars. Place on a wire rack, tea towel, or wood cutting board. Allow to cool in same spot for 24 hours.
Remove the rings to store the zucchini relish. Label & store in a cool, dark place.