A couple months ago, before the tomatoes were really getting good, I accidentally knocked a few off the vine trying to get to my beans or something. These were my first tomatoes, so I valued each one like my firstborn and I brought them in, even though they were just green. I could try to let them ripen on the counter, I guessed.
I also had a dozen or so baby okra with which I was smitten. They were 2 inches long, all covered with velvety lanugo, and I couldn’t bear to cook them, such was their effect on the maternal parts of my limbic system. I’d seen Marc at No Recipes do a smoked paprika okra pickle (inspired by the artisanal pickles of one Rick), and remembered crunchy pickled okra is such a wonderful thing. Since okra is a vegetable enjoyed in Indian cuisine, I figured some curry and chili wouldn’t hurt it.
I tucked the cherubic okra into the jar with some sliced onion, garlic and red chili, and tipped in some peppercorns, mustard and coriander seeds, and a bay leaf or two. There was still so much room in the jar – I looked around and saw the green tomatoes on the counter and the lightbulb went off. I sliced them into thick wedges and slid them into the jar.
I heated up some regular white vinegar with salt, a bit of sugar (just enough to take the edge off the heat, not enough to taste), and a nice spoonful of curry powder. I added a splash of water to balance the acidity, and poured it over the vegetables. Lid and back of the fridge, cut to last week.
I pulled them out of the fridge last week and gave a taste. Oh, man, these are a thing. Just straight from the jar, or dipped in hot sauce, if you really want a spanking. Fortunately, I prefer the green tomato over the okra as a pickle, because I have shitloads of them, and they’re free. Oh, the okra is good, don’t get me wrong – I just like the crunchy green tomato more.
I can’t wait to see how these go with a Bloody Mary – maybe one of my jars of homemade tomato sauce will get turned to Bloody Mary mix?