Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wedding Favors

So I'm getting married! Wow. I haven't written about this on my blog yet; sadly, I've been spending all of my blogging time on another site, the Off Beat Bride Tribe. I keep a running journal of wedding planning updates there, but the last update overlaps with this blog, so here you have it.

The only person who will truly know what I went through to create my wedding favors will be my BFF/maid of honor, and who I call my Top Chick, but for here will be referred to as M. I had 160 little jars shipped to her place because there's no room for them in my apartment in Brooklyn, and I drove myself, 75 hot peppers, and a food processor to her house this weekend to make my favors. We got up early to go to the green market near her house for 30 bell peppers (I didn't get them at home at my own green market on Saturday because I was afraid they wouldn't keep all week), ran some errands, and I got started chopping at around noon. I was committed to using local ingredients, so everything that went into these little buggers came from either my green market at Grand Army Plaza or her green market in Phoenixville, PA. I was going to use the peppers that are growing on my back balcony, but I didn't get a bumper crop this season, so I had to settle for someone else's.

I chopped half of the hot and bell peppers by hand so that the relish wouldn't be too mushy, and chopped up the other half in the food processor. I was chopping for FIVE STRAIGHT HOURS! Tomatillos go in the recipe, too, and I ran into a huge problem when the tomatillo skins got stuck in her garbage disposal unit. I had to fish around in there with my bare hands to clear it up, and even then, I had to use some Liquid Plummer. By 5:30, the relish was brining and my hands were burning like a &$((##@. I consulted an article on Chow about how to soothe burning hands after cutting chiles (Avoiding Chile Eyeball), and jumped in the car to buy some lemons, lemon juice, and yogurt.

You should have seen me at Target wheeling around a cart resting my hands on two frozen bags of edamame, and then in the parking lot pouring lemon juice over my hands.

It took me from about 8 pm until 11:30 to rinse the brine, drain the relish, wash the little jars, spoon in about 5 teaspoons into each jar, and then pour boiling hot vinegar syrup in each little jar. By the time Saturday Night Live came on, I was sitting on the floor with a glass of wine and each hand dunked into a big bowl of yogurt. Quite a sight (and very difficult to drink the wine). I was only able to do about 115--I ran out of relish. So I'll do the remaining 50 or so as sweet pepper relish this weekend. I don't think I can handle another batch of the hot anytime soon. I guess that answers my question about switching careers.


Tiloma said...

oh my goodness. so much work! I've been meaning to chat with you about your last email (re: wedding) so let's either call each other or chat at halloween. but this is amazing stuff - and I can't wait to eat it!

PS - would wearing surgical gloves help with avoiding the chili heat on hands issue? I have, if you need.


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Kitty said...

wow! they're so cute! i would never have guessed lemon juice would take away the sting; i would have thought yogurt or milk, though.

P said...

congrats!! i was looking for a bookmark and saw your blog, which i haven't visited for a long time. what awesome favors! and you're filling in at nyclu! we'll never be gourmets but still, i appreciate your beautiful blog. oh this is palyn BTW. hugs from the snow-drifty state of iowa!

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