Asparagus is one of our favorite veggies and we usually eat it fresh. It recently went on sale for less than $1 per pound so I decided to try pickling it.
Here is the roughly 4 pounds of asparagus that I started with.
The asparagus needs to be trimmed to 3/4 inch shorter then the height of the jar. I used pint and a half wide mouth jars in order to preserve most of the length of the asparagus and saved the bottoms for another purpose.
The asparagus was then blanched in batches for about 30 seconds until bright green in a large pot of salted water and immediately put into ice water to chill. It should be chilled for at least a half hour so more ice may be needed to keep the water cold.
After chilling for a half hour, the asparagus was removed from the water and laid out to drain while the pickling liquid was prepared.
Pickling Liquid for Asparagus:
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp pickling or canning salt
3 1/2 cups white vinegar
2 1/2 cups water
Combine in large pot and bring to a boil for one minute over medium-high heat.
Add asparagus and simmer until heated through.
The asparagus will change from a bright green to a brownish green while simmering.
In each prepared jar place 1/2 to 1 tsp of minced garlic and 1/2 tsp mustard seeds. Pack the asparagus tips down into the jars, leaving room for the pickling liquid. Pour in the liquid leaving 1/2 inch of headspace. Remove any air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims and put lids/rings on. Process for 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude. This yielded three pint and a half jars.