Pickled whole peppers, missing brine

IAmSupernova(SE Texas 9A)June 20, 2013

I'm not really confused on where it went (I cut holes in the peppers and they were kind of on the hollow side) last night it was fine, but today there's about an inch or so worth of pepper above the brine level. Been sitting on the counter for about 16 hours at this point.

My question is, is this okay? Or should I open the jar and level it off with vinegar/water and treat the jar as if it didn't seal (put in the fridge and consume immediately)? Would that even be safe since it's been sitting out over night?

For the record I used a 50/50 mix of water to (5%) vinegar (and 2 tbsp pickling salt for 4 cups liquid). I poured the boiling brine over the uncooked peppers packed in the jar, used the poking stick to get out air (obviously didn't do enough) sealed the jars and processed them in a BWB for 10 minutes.

This post was edited by IAmSupernova on Thu, Jun 20, 13 at 16:00

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Are they floating? could you turn the jars over to help? I think the peppers that are sticking out wouldn't taste as good and maybe get wrinkly.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 8:07PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Normally it isn't recommended to open jars and "top off" the liquid. The food above the liquid tends to darken and discolor but is still considered safe to eat.

But then the approved recipes also call for much more vinegar than you used too - 4:1 or even 5:1 vinegar to water. While a 1:1 mix is the bare minimum allowed in pickling, the pH quickly rises due to the water in the peppers diluting the vinegar even more so long term shelf storage isn't recommended.

In this case, unless you are talking about many jars, I'd be inclined to to open the jar, top it off with more vinegar, and store in the fridge.

JMO. Your choice.


    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 10:19AM
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IAmSupernova(SE Texas 9A)

Nope just the 1 jar like that. It was my test jar, I got a bunch of peppers coming soon though.

I topped it off and will eat 'em up quick.

I tried finding a recipe for them on Ball's website but didn't see one. So I had to resort to google which gives you very mixed results. Everything from 50/50 to practically all vinegar. I'll make sure to use more vinegar in the future though.

EDIT: And yeah they were floating, but if I flip them upside down, they're still floating there was too much air in the jar. I also thought you couldn't store sealed jars upside down or on it's side? Or at least I read never to do that.

This post was edited by IAmSupernova on Fri, Jun 21, 13 at 16:29

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 4:27PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

NCHFP has the instructions for pickled peppers whole or in rings, mixed, sweet, or hot, roasted or plain. Or if you put 'pickled peppers' in this forum search you'll find several other recipe links too.


Here is a link that might be useful: Pickled hot peppers - NCHFP

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 4:33PM
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IAmSupernova(SE Texas 9A)

Thanks I'll use that next time I go to make them.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 5:02PM
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Another thing you might try - this is what we did when pickled pepperoncini last year - is slit/poke the peppers and soak them in a bowl of vinegar overnight. Put a plate on top and weigh it down just enough to help press the air out and let the vinegar infuse the pepper cavity.

Then continue with the recipe. Helped with our "floating" peppers.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 5:33PM
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IAmSupernova(SE Texas 9A)

Thanks for the tip, I'll definitely be using it as it bugs me to no end when there's food floating above the liquid.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2013 at 6:40PM
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