We call Aunt Polly "the pickle queen" because she was always canning pickles. One of our favorites is this pickled carrot recipe she made up. Vinegary and spicy, they are a great accompaniment to almost any meal. My sister had to find her copy of the recipe so I could can some of these with my garden carrots. She said she hoped that Santa would drop a pint or two down her Chimney. LOL Hint Hint.
Wash, peel and slice into 1/4" slices as many carrots as you want to pickle.
Mix brine ingredients in a non reactive pan and heat to boiling. Taste the brine and adjust your flavorings (more vinegar Or water, more salt, garlic and spiciness to your liking) If you use the optional hot pepper, you can adjust the heat by adding more, but you cannot take any out, so I suggest you start with a conservative amount and add if you want it spicier) Keep just below boiling until needed.
Place carrots in a lg saucepan or stock pot, cover with salted water and cook until crisp tender. Do not over cook or you will end up with spicy pickled carrot baby food.
Drain carrots well and pack in sterilized pint jars.
Pour Hot brine over and leave about 1/2 inch headspace. Wipe rims and place lid and ring on the jar and turn it finger tight. (Not arm wrestling here, just tight)
Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes, remove and place on a towel in draft free place, let cool. When cool, check seals and store in cool dark place for at least a week to develop flavor.
If there are any jars that do not seal, keep them in refrigerator and taste them occasionally. LOL
I have also placed a small garlic clove in the bottom of the jars before packing or packed some rings of sweet hungarian peppers or slices of onions or sliced green peppers in with these carrots for variety