Quick Pickled Apples

By • March 26, 2012 • 26 Comments

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Author Notes: I'm a fan of pickled fruit. It's a great tart accompaniment to rich foods. I used maple syrup instead of sugar to add a little extra flavor punch. I tried making this first with cider vinegar, but the vinegar flavor overpowered the mix. The apple slices will fade with time, so feel free to try a redder skinned apple. This particular pickle would be lovely alongside a serving of unctuous pork, or even on a pulled pork sandwich.hardlikearmour

Food52 Review: WHO: Hardlikearmour is a fierce home cook and veterinarian living in Portland, Oregon.
WHAT: Your new autumn condiment, garnish, sandwich-topper, or snack.
HOW: Make a spiced, maple-sweetened brine, then pour over sliced apples. Refrigerate.
WHY WE LOVE IT: We love how simple hardlikearmour's recipe is -- we'll find ourselves turning to it whenever we have a bunch of apples on our hands. The pickles go perfectly with the rich, fatty foods we crave in the autumn -- and they'd be great on a holiday cheese board, too.
cheesypennies

Makes 1 pint

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white wine or champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup, plus additional if desired (grade B if you can find it)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pickling spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 large-ish Pink Lady apples
  • 2 to 3 star anise pods
  1. Combine the water, vinegar, maple syrup, pickling spice, and kosher salt in a small to medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat heat to low and cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon out a small amount of the brine, allow to cool, and taste. If you want a sweeter pickle add more maple syrup, a tablespoon at a time.
  2. After you reduce the heat on the brine, wash and core your apples. No need to peel them -- but if you do, it works too! Cut them in half (pole to pole), then cut each half into approximately 1/8th inch slices. Transfer the slices to a quart glass measure or similar sized bowl. Add the star anise pods to the bowl.
  3. Pour the brine through a strainer into the bowl with the apple slices, then cover and allow to come to room temperature. The apples will float, so I used my strainer to keep them submerged by covering the strainer and glass measure tightly with plastic wrap (see photo).
  4. Once they have hit room temperature, transfer them to a pint glass jar, layering them evenly around the perimeter. Transfer the star anise pods to the space left in the middle of the apples. Fill the jar with brine, and discard left over brine. Cover and refrigerate. They are good for at least a week in the fridge.
Jump to Comments (26)

Comments (26) Questions (1)

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3 months ago seth10597

If I were to make these in small wide mouth mason jars how long would they last with the lid closed? would I refrigerate them?

Gator_cake

3 months ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

They keep at least a month in the refrigerator.

Stringio

3 months ago ugocrazy

Please what is pickling spice?
I'm sure i can find this in my local shop out in Paris. What does it contain ?

Thanks for the recipe looks good!

Gator_cake

3 months ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Pickling spice is a blend containing yellow and brown mustard seeds, allspice, cinnamon, bay leaves, dill seed, cloves, ginger, black peppercorns, star anise, coriander, juniper, mace, cardamom and crushed red pepper. The exact spices and proportions vary depending on the manufacturer.

Open-uri20130601-14429-kkgmfn

6 months ago Winifred Ryan

I've done pickled fruit before (peaches, cranberries) and really enjoyed them. This sounds great except I'm not a fan of anise. Would you expect stick cinnamon to be a good sub? I know it's classic with apple.

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about 1 year ago kavey

I like to make pickles and chutneys to preserve a large harvest, which means I wouldn't necessarily be eating them within the week. Do you know whether this recipe has enough vinegar / sugar to preserve the apples longer term or is this pickle best used short term only? Thank you!

Gator_cake

about 1 year ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

I'm pretty sure (though would message mrswheelbarrow to be more sure) that there is enough acidity to preserve them longer. I'm just not sure the texture would hold up long term.

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about 1 year ago kavey

Thank you!

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about 1 year ago biocarolyn

I forgot about these in the refrigerator for at least a month. The texture was fine, and they were delicious!

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about 1 year ago kavey

Wonderful, thank you!

Lorigoldsby

over 2 years ago lorigoldsby

Looking forward to trying these with some pulled pork this weekend...do they need a day or two for the flavors to develop? Or good to go that day?

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

There good right away, but better after a day or 2.

Summer_2010_1048

over 2 years ago Midge

What a great idea to use maple syrup here. Love fruit pickles and yours are so pretty!

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, Midge! The apple color does fade over time, but the flavor improves so it's a good trade-off. I might try using a redder apple next time. I love Pink Lady's and had some on hand when I made this.

Sausage2

over 2 years ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Delicious! You turned me on to pickled fruit big time with your prunes. These sound wonderful as well.

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, 5&S! These are much more pickly and less candyish than the prunes.

Flower-bee

over 2 years ago Droplet

These sound really good. My dad makes a similar thing. If you have time to wait you can also try pickling them whole, but I love how neatly you arranged your slices in the jar :)

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, Droplet! I'm not always good at delayed gratification, but whole apples sound lovely, especially with some tiny ones!

Dscn2212

over 2 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

I'll bet these are wonderful, and look forward to making some. Look like a great snack.

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thank, boulangere! If you like tangy & sweet, you'll like them.

Mrs._larkin_370

over 2 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Oh, these sound yummy, hla.

Gator_cake

over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thank you, mrsL!

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over 2 years ago aargersi

Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.

These look delicious! I am hunting for things to take on a vegan picnic this weekend and these sound perfect.

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, aargersi! They are definitely vegan

3-bizcard

over 2 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I love pickled fruit also, this is great. I bought some pickled seckle pears recently and it was so good. Apples are a wonderful idea.

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over 2 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Thanks, sdebrango! I bet this would be good with some firm pears, too.