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Chow Chow

Chow Chow Relish
TODAY Show: Al Roker turns his favorite summer produce into relishes and pickles. – September 4, 2015Samantha Okazaki / TODAY


To salt
  • 4 cups green tomatoes (5-6 tomatoes)
  • 4 cups green cabbage (1 medium cabbage)
  • 4 cups yellow onion (2 large onions)
  • 2 cups red bell peppers (3 large)
  • 2 cups orange bell peppers (3 large)
  • 2 cups green bell pepper (3 large)
  • ½ cup kosher salt
To boil
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard seeds
  • 2 teaspoons celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups water


Combine vegetables and salt in a large glass bowl.  Mix well and let sit 12 hours or overnight.  Drain vegetables and rinse well under cold running water.  

In a large pot, combine boiling ingredients. Heat over medium heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add vegetables and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower heat slightly and let cook 4-5 minutes. Ladle chow chow mixture into jars and seal.

Sterilize jars in a deep pot large enough to hold the jars upright in a single layer with a few inches height above the lids. Place a wire rack with feet into the bottom of the pot. Place the jars onto the wire rack so that they aren’t sitting directly on the bottom of the pot. Fill pot 2/3 full of water and place over high heat. 

If needed, add more water so that it covers the jars 1-inch over their tops. When the water comes to a boil, let boil 10 minutes, making sure the water covers the jars the entire time. (Bring some water to a boil in a separate pot in case you need to add some to the large pot to keep the jars covered.)

Turn heat off and use tongs to remove jars from the water, placing onto a towel-lined sheet pan. Let the jars cool undisturbed, until the center of the lid is pulled downward, making a ‘pop’ sound, usually within a few hours. This means the lid is properly sealed. The pickles are ready to eat anytime from the next day onward.  Unopened jars will keep for up to 12 months. Once opened, refrigerate and eat within a few weeks.