Q&A with Glenys Woollard - Food

What can i do with a surplus cucumber?

Make refrigerator pickles. Layer 3 cups thinly sliced cucumber and 1 cup thinly sliced onion in two clean glass jars. Combine in a pot 1 cup each cider vinegar, white vinegar and sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and teaspoon each celery seed, mustard seed and turmeric. Heat to boiling point, stirring to dissolve the sugar then pour the hot liquid over the vegetables. Leave until cool then cover tightly and refrigerate. Wait 24 hours before sampling and use within a month.

What's the difference between black and white peppercorns?

To produce black peppercorns, pepper berries are picked before they are ripe then dried, either in the sun or over charcoal fires, until they turn black. The outer husk is left on, giving black peppercorns their characteristic fragrance. White peppercorns are left on the plant until ripe, with the dark outer husk buffed off after picking. And then there are green peppercorns - same pepper berries, but picked when still soft and unripe, then preserved in brine or freeze-dried.

If you have a food question email Glenys at glenyswoollard@clear.net.nz

- Hamilton News

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