Leafing through my printed out seasonal recipes I came across a splattered print out of this recipe. I will never delete this email, or any others he sent me.
Date: 26 October 2010, 02.58
Subject: Pickled Onions
It's about quarter past two, can't sleep, so I thought I'd have an Ovaltine and give you my recipe--
Peel the onions, I prefer to use smallish ones about 1" (2.5cm) in diameter or small shallots. Don't get bigger ones and cut them. Place in a metal or enamel bowl and sprinkle with sea salt. (If you use ceramic bowl, the strong salt plays havoc with the glaze). Cover, shake when you pass by to ensure the thick brine always spreads over the onions and leave for 24 hours.
Drain onions and place in jars without washing. To ascertain the amount of malt vinegar you'll need, fill up the jars and pour off into a pan and bring up to the boil. Turn off.
Make up a package of pickling spice for each jar. You'll need 4" squares of some gauze-like thinnish permeable cloth (as I told Chris, my secret is to use unwashed Y-fronts....) and I suggest the easiest and best way is to get proprietary pickling spice, I always crush it. Otherwise you'll need to crush coriander, black pepper corns, mustard seed, small dry hot chillis, ginger, allspice. Put about a dessertspoonful of spice in each cloth square and tie up into packages. Add to the warm vinegar,simmer very gently for about 10 mins. Put a package of spice in each jar of onions and pour over the spiced vinegar.
Screw on the caps, but put a layer of cling film to protect the lids from the vinegar.
Leave for at least 3 months and that's it.
Ah well, I've finished my Ovaltine - let's see if can get some sleep....zzzzz nite nite!!
Luv to you all and some (but not a lot) of sympathy for him..........
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