21 Oct 2011

Nasturtium Capers!

by Robyn Jasko

I love nasturtiums----not only are they easy to grow from seed, producing nonstop blooms until frost, but you can also eat every part of the plant. Even the seeds! (which taste like fresh wasabi peas). But recently, I discovered another way to use nasturtiums----diy capers!

By pickling the unripe seed heads of a nasturtium, you can make your own capers. It’s like a dream come true. Now, some people on the web call these poor man’s capers----i just call them good. They are really easy to make, and go perfect with a bagel with cream cheese, or with a white wine pasta sauce, on fish, with pizza, etc. Wherever you need capers, these are a fantastic stand in (and much cheaper).

Nasturtium Capers
  • 1 Cup Nasturtium Seeds
  • 1 Cup 5% Vinegar
  • 2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 5-8 peppercorns, slightly crushed
  • Garlic, Bay leaf, celery seed (optional and to taste)
1. Wash nasturtium buds and put them in a sterilized Mason jar.
2. Combine rest of the ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil.
2. Pour over the nasturtiums and fill the jar. Cap and process 15 minutes in a hot-water bath.
3. Cool; label and store. Let sit for 3 months (if you can wait that long) to let full flavors develop.

Don’t feel like canning? No worries, just store in the fridge instead of canning them, and they’ll last in the fridge up to 6 months. But, canning means you can give them out for holiday gifts!

Fall is the perfect time to go nasturtium seed hunting, so get to it. Look for the three-leaf clover type of buds that cluster where the flowers have died off---and pick firm, green seeds.


About the author:

Robyn Jasko started Grow Indie in 2009, to empower people with the tools, know-how and gusto to try growing their own food, while being as resourceful as possible.

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