Sunday, January 27, 2013

An Experiment in Pickled Bologna

Living in the south, I haven't had pickled bologna in over a decade.  It's a rare treat I remember from my childhood and summers spent in Michigan.

Off and on, I have looked around here for ring bologna.  Without much success.... until the other day.  I finally went to the local Publix.  Seriously, it set my foody heart a flutter!  It's like going to the commissary and reminds me a bit of going grocery shopping in Germany.

So I brought my prize home and started scouring the internet for a recipe based on the memory of pickled bologna.

I found this good foundation one at Food.com.

The original recipe:

1 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pickling spices
1 medium onion, sliced
1 lb ring bologna, cut into 2-3 inch slices.

And the recipe after I changed it:

1 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 lb ring bologna, cut into 2-3 inch chunks

(When I'm experimenting, I don't do actual measurements.  It's based on personal preferences, and really that's the way I recommend doing it.)

Minced garlic-- a lot. (I really like garlic)
Garlic powder-- also a lot. (^ see above.)
Onion powder-- a lot, but not as much as the garlic powder (since I removed the sliced onion from the original.)
Pepper--a good shake.
Ground Mustard-- a dash
Ground Mace-- a small dash (a little mace goes a LONG way!)
Ground Allspice--a small dash (it's a lot like mace.)
Ground Cumin--a dash
Cardamom-- a dash
Ground Cinnamon-- a small dash (I don't want it to taste like dessert, after all.)
and Paprika-- also a small dash

Then on to the directions.

Every recipe I found says to put the cut up bologna in a glass jar.... I don't happen to have a glass jar on hand.  (Admittedly, I can appreciate the irony of having -all- of those spices on hand...and no glass jars.)  And I wanted to start making this bologna tonight, so I cut up my bologna and put it in a glass bread pan.  I then doused it in minced garlic.  I mixed all of the other ingredients in a small pan on the stove and boiled them for 8 minutes, stirring often to mix in the spices and sugar.  Then poured it over the bologna and garlic.  I covered it with plastic wrap and set the timer for 30 minutes to cool before putting it in the fridge to chill.  Going to try it tomorrow.  Most of the recipes say that the longer you let it sit, the better the flavors mingle.  I have -very- high hopes for it because it smells fantastic and is making my mouth water already (:

Update:  It turned out great!  But I'm going to let it keep soaking (:

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