Almost that time of year again! May-June is Asparagus time in Alberta!
Last year we bought lots of Asparagus from Edgar Farms. These pickles we made were amazing.
I did not use green bell pepper. I substituted either red or yellow.
Source: Bernardin Complete Book of Home Preserving edited by Judi Kingry and Lauren Devine
Trim tough ends from asparagus and cut spears into uniform lengths about 3/4 inch (or 2cm) shorter than the inside height of the jars you are using. In a large shallow dish, cover asparagus with ice water and refrigerate for 1 hour. Drain well.
Meanwhile, prepare caner, jars and lids. About 6 pint jars should work.
In a small bowl, combine red and green bell pepper, hot pepper and garlic. Mix well and set aside.
In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar and salt. Stir well and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and boil gently for 5 minutes. Add asparagus and return to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes or until asparagus is heated through.
Place 2 tbsp chopped pepper mixture, 1 tsp dill seeds, and 1 tsp mustard seeds into each hot jar. Pack asparagus, tips down, into hot jars. Ensure 1/2 inch is clear above the asparagus spears. Ladle hot picking liquid into jar to cover asparagus, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if necessary.
Wipe rim, center lid on jar. Screw band until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.
Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil and process for 15 minutes (Calgary altitude adjusted). Remove canned lid, wait 5 minutes, then remove jars. Cool for 12 hours and store. If lid does not seal, refrigerate or reprocess.