Pickled pumpkin with star anise
Fills a 1-litre jar
1.4kg pumpkin or squash (you need about 750g pumpkin or squash flesh) 475ml cider vinegar 475ml water
400g granulated sugar
1 tbsp salt 2 star anise
12 black peppercorns
3 dried chillis 2cm-piece fresh root ginger,
peeled and sliced
3 tbsp sweet sherry (optional)
Halve the pumpkin or squash and remove the seeds. Cut the flesh into cubes. Put everything else, except the
sherry, into a pan and slowly bring to the boil, stirring to help the sugar dissolve. Add the pumpkin or squash
cubes and mix everything around. Turn the heat down to a
simmer and cook the pumpkin or squash until it is tender.
Lift the cubes out into a hot sterilised jar and pour over the vinegar syrup, along with all the spices. Add the sherry if you want to – I find it just gives a nice kick and an extra dimension. Seal with a vinegar-proof lid. Once the jar is opened, keep it
in the fridge, and serve with pork, duck, charcuterie or grilled mackerel.