Green walnuts a-pickling

And here we are – my beauties!! A whole bucketful of green walnuts, all ready for the pickling.

These are a gift from two kind friends (thanks Pat and Pat).

Robert assigns himself the task of pricking them all before their processing. It’s essential to wear gloves when you do this, or your hands will end up black for weeks.

As you can see, Robert doesn’t worry about this at all.

This implement he is using, he made decades ago. It’s simply an old fork with some of the tines removed. Works perfectly.

If anyone has a fancy for making this interesting preserve, it’s well worth the trouble.

There are two recipes in “A Year in a Bottle” or “Complete Preserves”. One is for the sour/savoury variety, the other for the sweet version.

The savoury version – delicious served sliced with cheese. I hear this version originated in Eastern Europe.

The sweet preserved walnuts are often used in desserts in the Middle East and beyond.

If indeed you choose to make either, best to pick the walnuts now before any shell forms (check by piercing with a darning needle).

Boxing Day used to be the right time to pick them. However, with the warmer weather of late, they are ready right now.

By now Robert has probably finished the chore of pricking them, so it’s time I got on with the next stage – brining for the savoury, and soaking down in water for the sweet.

Love this time of year for produce, if not for the heat…

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