Vidalia Onion Relish Tutorial–Melissa McDonald
So today I was working on Vidalia onion relish, and thought I’d take the time to snap some pics in the process. Vidalias were $0.99/lb, so I took advantage of that and bought 10 lbs of them. My family really loves this recipe and I was waiting for a sale, so here it is. This recipe is from NCHFP, on page 8. http://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/uga/FDNS-E-43-18.pdf
My altitude is 1160 ft, so my adjustment for this particular recipe is an additional 5 minutes added to processing time (you’ll see my clock here in a bit).
Chopped onion, that I chopped through my new chop wizard. Since this recipe requires that I “sweat” the onions with salt, I use an clean old t-shirt to gather up the pieces and drain. It just makes life easier for me.
Instructions call for the product to be allowed to drain for 1/2 an hour, so I tie the bunch up with a produce rubber band and hang on the cabinet to let it continue draining in the sink. Once the 30 minutes are up, I will then rinse this product several times to remove as much salt from it as I can. That’s the one part they seem to miss in this recipe. If you don’t, then the product will be much too salty to be palatable. Rinse, rinse, then rinse and drain!
Batch is cooking. Leave to cook for the entire 30 minutes, so the sugar gets a chance to melt and the spicebag does it’s magic. Put the heat down low and stir frequently to keep it from burning on the bottom.
While the onions are cooking down, prep your jars and lids. I’m trying out my new set of tattler lids for the first time. (This batch is the “old style” tattler lids that will need tightened again after processing). Recipe calls for pints, but I don’t have enough available right now, so I threw in some half pints as well.
Jar is loaded into the canner, then the process is repeated until all my product is jarred and placed in the canner. This batch produced exactly 4 pints and 4 half pints for me. (What?! That never happens! )
While jars are cooling, I carefully grab the jars with tattler lids one at a time and gently tighten the band again to assure a good seal, which is what’s required of the tattler lids. The rest are then placed on a towel and will sit here overnight. Tomorrow I will remove the bands, test the seals and reprocess if necessary. All sealed jars I will wash and dry in the sink, mark the product name and the date I canned them, then they will move into a dark, cool basement until I’m ready to use them.