Mark Hix recipe: Pickled chive buds

 

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This year my chives seem to be flowering like crazy, new blooms seem to sprout all the time. During their budding stage I experimented with pickling them in cider vinegar – so I'd have my own caper-like pickles. They worked a treat and managed to keep that pink tinge once pickled. Once you've got some on the go in a jar, you can just keep harvesting more and adding them to the mix – or use very small jars and have different batches with different vinegars, even.

I've used them on fish, meat and even on a fried egg for breakfast with some lardons of bacon, or bits of smoked haddock.

20-30 chive buds, or as many as you can harvest
Enough cider or white wine vinegar to cover the buds

Sterilise baby Kilner or small clean jars with boiling water, then leave to cool. Fill them two-thirds with the chive buds, cover with vinegar and seal the lid. Leave to pickle for about a month at the very least before using.

You can use the buds with lots of things, but I am particularly fond of scattering them over barbecued cuttlefish, as per the picture above.

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