I am excited to share this guest post with you from Jenny deRemer. This is my first guest post and I want to thank Jenny for joining us and sharing one of her delicious Southern recipes with all of you! Her Quick Sweet Pickled Summer Vegetable Relish is a great way to use fresh veggies from your garden, farmer’s market, or grocery store. You will not be disappointed. She is a self proclaimed “culinary novice, ardent authority on all things travel, designer by trade, and creator of Not Entirely Average.” A quick look through her site will leave you craving southern cooking at home, wherever you are. She designs masterpieces from appetizers, through the meal and dessert, and onto cocktails. I can’t wait to try her Spiced Blood Orange Sour this weekend. We’re thrilled to have her here.
Guest Post #1 with Jenny deRemer from Not Entirely Average
How privileged I am to be asked by fellow blogger and friend Miss Deb to have her feature one of my recipes on Ma’am Cave. I have chosen a recipe that I have not shared with my own readers yet, an easy and quick sweet pickled summer vegetable relish. But, before I unveil all sorts of ingredients and methods, a bit about me.
My name is Jenny deRemer and I am originally from Basking Ridge, New Jersey. I now call Charleston, South Carolina home, and have bumped around this historic town since 2005. I followed my parents down shortly after they retired. Though I miss it terribly, New Jersey just was not home without my folks.
In 2017, I read an article about a couple who ‘lessened their load,’ to start anew. They sold their home to free up cash and moved to New Hampshire where they purchased a small farm. The ‘start anew’ focused on how this family generated a trickle of passive income by writing about their experience and fear of selling their biggest asset and leaving their high salary jobs in New York City behind for the unknown. They blogged about everything from learning how to raise chickens to collecting rainwater in barrels. And, people LOVED THEM. Soon, local businesses who sold them the rain barrels and the feed for those chickens were offering the family a percentage of any sale if the family advertised the wares on their site. Thus, the affiliate marketing began.
Readers embraced the entire family and tuned in weekly to follow their adventuresome posts. Since the children were now being homeschooled, that engaged an angle of unique readers and followers in addition to those following the boutique farming. All of those same readers also purchased. LOTS. The family now earns a six-figure salary from affiliate marketing and sponsored product posts annually. They live the simple life in the country they yearned for and are raising their children within nature.
The article stuck with me. And, probably like many, I thought they were crazy. After all, I too had a nice house and a fantastic job at the time. Yet the more I considered their assertions, the more I realized how stagnant my own life had become. It would not be until some 14 months later that I would investigate setting up my own LLC, and gradually make the transition from working for somebody else, to becoming my own lady boss.
It has been a heck of a FAST ride in just three short years. I am my own lady boss now, the personality behind Not Entirely Average, a Charleston, South Carolina-based food and lifestyle blog. I went the foodie direction because I honestly felt like it was the only thing I was good at. I had no special training and I learned how to start a business and file for the appropriate licenses along the way.
I wake every morning thinking about my readers and how my role has become hugely important now that we have experienced economic downturns due to the pandemic. Many parts of the country were caught off guard despite the news worsening hourly in the beginning. I feel like many thought it would never get to this point. I focused on pantry staple recipes. I looked up BUNCHES of my Grandmother’s old recipes, many from the Depression. I tweaked and modified and cooked my best. The response has been overwhelming.
So, that recipe I promised you! I grew up on a small farm in New Jersey. My Mom, aunts, and Grandmother all grew their own vegetables and fruits, and canned every bit of their harvests. I never formally learned to can. This modified recipe for Quick Sweet Pickled Summer Vegetable Relish is one I recall eating many times on everything from grilled frankfurters to plank finished pork tenderloin and requires no true canning procedure. With all sorts of summer vegetables coming in just now, this recipe makes good use of a good variety of them, especially if you have half an onion or a quarter of red pepper leftover from some other recipe. This way, nothing gets thrown away. This recipe yields about a cup and keeps under refrigeration for up to two weeks.
Quick Sweet Pickled Summer Vegetable Relish
- 1/2 cup store-bought bread and butter pickles
- 1/2 cup mixed garden vegetables such as sweet red pepper,onion, carrot, cauliflower, or zucchini, rough chopped
- 2 tsp caster sugar
- 1 tbsp juice from the store-bought bread and butter pickles
- 1 tbsp pickled mustard seeds from the store-bought bread and butter pickles
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp strong mustard such as Dijon
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- freshly cracked black pepper
- Add the store-bought bread and butter pickles and the rough chopped mixed garden vegetables to a food processor.
- Pulse 1 to 2 times until you get a small chop. Then add the caster sugar and ground cinnamon.
- Pulse again 1 to 2 pulses until you end up with a lightly coarse mixture. Scrape the blended pickle vegetable mixture into a medium sized mixing bowl (not metal). Add the pickled mustard seeds, pickle juice, mustard, vinegar,and onion powder. Season mildly with freshly cracked black pepper to taste.
- Using a rubber spatula, stir the relish well. Cover and let the relish marinate at room temperature for two hours. Then check the seasoning again and add extra cinnamon, sugar, onion powder or pepper if necessary. Transfer the relish to a jar or small bowl with a lid and refrigerate overnight. The flavors marry best the longer the relish sits.
- Store refrigerated for up to two weeks.
Summer is great time to try new things such as this delicious recipe! Check out our list of 7 New Things to Try this Summer.
Jenny is a Charleston, South Carolina-based culinary novice, ardent authority on all things travel, designer by trade, and creator of Not Entirely Average. She hales from Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and is now a transplant in the great American South. She has a weakness for farmers markets, delights in adventures way off the beaten path, enjoys documenting her many moods through photography, and has been known to conquer the occasional yard sale with gusto! For more about Jenny and her wonderful recipes, visit www.notentirelyaverage.com