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Taqueria-style Pickled Carrots


1/2 tsp cumin seed
2 c. white vinager
2TBS plus 2tsp kosher salt, divided
2tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp lightly crushed peppercorns
1 red onion, peeled and sliced into strips
2-4 Jalapenos, quartered, seeded for less heat
2 3/4lbs carrots, peeled and cut on the bias
8 garlic cloves, peeled
4 small dried red chilies (optional)


  1. In a large, deep pot, add 4 pint jars and their lids. Cover with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat. Use tongs to remove the pint jars and lids from the hot water. Turn the jars upside down onto a kitchen towel to drain.
  2. While the jars sterilize, start the pickles. In a small skillet over medium-high heat, add the cumin seeds and toast, stirring often, until the seeds are golden and fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a small plate to cool.
  3. To a medium sauce-pan, add the vinegar, water, 1 tablespoon plus 1 peppercorns and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the onion and jalapeños and turn off the heat.
  4. Bring a large saucepan of water and the remaining 1 tablespoon of salt to a boil. Add the carrots and simmer until al dente, about 3 minutes. Drain the carrots in a colander and immediately transfer them to the saucepan with the vinegar and onions. Bring the ingredients to a boil, then turn off the heat.
  5. Divide the toasted cumin seeds, garlic cloves and red chiles (if using) among the 4 jars. Using a slotted spoon, divide the carrots and onions among the jars. Top with the hot vinegar,leaving ½ inch of headspace at the top of the jar. Fasten the tops onto the jars and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

For longer storage, hot-water-process the pickles:
Transfer the jars back to a pot of water, making sure the lids are tightly secured and that they are covered by at least a few inches of water, and boil for 10 minutes. Use tongs to transfer the jars to a kitchen-towel-lined surface and cool completely at room temperature. Store in a cool, dry, dark space.