Get started pickling with this old family recipe.
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I met David Breeden while working at Per Se in 2006 and 2007. Originally from Tennessee, David is chef de cuisine at the French Laundry restaurant in Napa, California. This recipe belonged to his grandmother, Betty Joan Breeden, from Mosheim, Tennessee, and is so named because it is a first-rate pickling base.
- 2 litres water 2 quarts
- 500 ml distilled white vinegar 18 fl oz
- 115 g salt 4oz
- 200 g caster (superfine) sugar 7oz
- 20 g celery hearts, sliced 3/4 oz
- 12 g garlic, sliced 1/2 oz
- 25 g dill 1 oz
- 1/2 tsp chilli flakes red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 6 g star anise
- 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
- Bring the water, distilled vinegar, salt and sugar to the boil in a large pot, being sure to whisk to dissolve the salt and sugar fully.
- Put all the remaining ingredients in a large Tupperware box or other airtight container. Pour the boiling liquid over them and leave, uncovered, to cool.