Christmas Help! Herb infused vinegar, safe without BWB, etc?
I haven't pickled anything before and whole foods seemed like a reputable source, so I used 5% acidity red wine vinegar and steeped thyme and orange zest for several days in a vessel that had gone through the high temp sanitize and heated dry cycle in my dishwasher.
After steeping, I poured this mixture with a new sprig of fresh thyme (washed but allowed to dry for a few hours first) and one clove of garlic into bottles that I put through the same dishwasher cycle with additional heated dry at 150 F in my oven until all water droplets were gone.
After reading some stuff about garlic in oil, and proper pickling techniques, I've gotten concerned that this might not be safe to eat because I didn't explicitly boil stuff before and after like in normal canning (which I have never done), but maybe that's no necessary because of the vinegar? The whole foods recipe didn't say anything about that. I was going to give these as gifts for Christmas -- are these safe??