Just before Christmas several branches blew down on our Walnut tree. Suddenly we had masses of Green Walnuts, hating to waste such a resource we set to to pickle some, (2 buckets worth) & then still had some spare.Checking out the internet I found a recipe for a green Walnut Liquer called ‘Liquer de noix’ which is supposed to be delicious. Geoff has some doubts & was rather begrudging of the vodka needed to make this. Hopefully in a few months time, the vodka will be redeemed!The Pickled Walnut recipe is from Aunt Daisy, & the finished product is just like the Walnuts I remember having at Christmas as a kid in England. They are strong flavoured & maybe a bit of an acquired taste.

Pickled Walnuts:

Gather walnuts that have no sign of a shell forming, for us this is early to mid December, but I guess it varies from tree to tree & place to place.

Prick each walnut 4 or 5 times with a fork, disposable gloves are useful to stop your hands turning brown.

Make up a brine of 6 oz salt to 4 pints of water, make enough up to cover the walnuts.

Stir every day, & change the brine after 3 days & 6 days. Leave in brine all up about 9 days.

Drain & leave in the sun until they turn black.

If you can remember how much brine you made for one batch, this is about how much vinegar you’ll need.

For each 4 pints of malt vinegar add 2 oz Black Pepper, 3 oz Ginger, 3 oz cloves ( I use about half this amount) 2 oz Mustard seeds, bring all to boil & simmer for 10 minutes.

Strain & pour over the walnuts, in jars or whatever containers you are using.Leave a few months to soak up the flavours. Esp good in small slices with cheese.

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Liquer de noix: photo aboveMix together 2 1/2 cups of sugar, 1L of Vodka, 2 sticks cinnamon, 10 cloves, 1/2 vanilla pod (I didn’t have this so put in I tblsp Vanilla essence) zest of 1 lemon.Quarter 30 green walnuts, put in a large jar & pour the vodka mix over them. Leave on a handy shelf or bench so you remember to give them a stir most days, After 2 months strain & bottle…watch this space! Not a great success, too bitter, Geoff says the only reason not to throw it out is the good vodka! Perhaps it has medicinal properties.

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