Readers’s Request- Italian Giardiniera Relish

This recipe is the result of a request from a reader. I encourage readers to post if you have a particular interest in a technique or recipe. I love a culinary challenge so don’t be afraid to ask. Giardiniera is a condiment used to top hot meat sandwiches. Mostly roast beef, but would be delicious on venison. Simple to make at home, it makes a great hostess gift. I have started making it again after a 10 year streak of buying it.

This recipe is adapted from a few sources, mostly from Chuck who was a chef I worked with years ago. He was from a old Chicago Italian family who loved to cook. After some begging, he gave me his recipe for his beloved “hot stuff” It’s more of a concept than a recipe and can be made with most ingredients. (In Italian, it also means woman gardener) I combined his recipe and the one from the Tribune for a great hybrid recipe.

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Chuck’s Giardiniera

Makes about 7 pints

1 pint of hot sport peppers in vinegar or 6 fresh serrano peppers, thinly sliced

1/2 stalk celery, chopped small

2 green and red peppers,

1/2 head cauliflower,

2 carrots, chopped small

1 yellow onion, chopped small

1/2 cup kosher salt

3 cloves garlic, minced

11/2- 2 cup stuffed green olives, chopped

1 Tablespoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 cup each- apple cider vinegar and extra virgin olive oil

You can also add sliced black olives. The key here is to make it colorful.

Add 1/4 cup crushed red pepper flakes

If you want it hotter, add more.

Combine the hot peppers, green peppers, celery, carrots, onion and cauliflower florets in a large bowl, stir in the salt. Add cold water and cover the vegetables, place in the fridge for 12 hours to overnight. After 12 hours, drain salt water and rinse vegetables, set aside. Combine the garlic, olives, oregano, red pepper flakes, celery seeds and black pepper in a bowl, Pour the vinegar and the olive oil  over the vegetable mixture and toss. Cover and refrigerate for at least 48 hours before using. Will keep in the fridge for several weeks.

This is what Chicagoans top their  Italian Beef with in the small neighborhood restaurants. You can find Giadiniera in most Italian food stores, but as you can see, it’s easy to make and makes a terrific  hostess gift for that friend or family member that LOVES hot food.

Start with fresh peppers

Chop all ingredients small, this is a condiment

Soak vegetables in salt water for at least 12 hours

mix olives, oil, vinegar and herbs after drained

ready in 48 hours!

Italian Beef Chicago Style

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5 Responses to Readers’s Request- Italian Giardiniera Relish

  1. Darlene Seelos says:

    Do you have an Italian Beef recipe to use this on? We are originally from the Chicago area and really miss a good Italian beef. The next challenge would be to find the right kind of buns to serve them on.

  2. Arlene Coco says:

    I will check and see what I have for a respectable recipe for Italian Beef. It’s like a religion down there, you know!

  3. Gina says:

    Can I can and shelf the giardiniera relish ?

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