Honest, this is not the way to go, if you return from the supermarked and realize you forgot to buy capers for your dinner. This will take you 4-5 days from start to finish. But it is worth it. So while you’re at it, make plenty. It will store forever, so no reason to worry about it.
I like elderberry capers for ie. fish. They have a bit more fragrance than the regular kind and there is a bit of a bite to it. The first thing you should try, when the capers are done, could be a capers sauce with browned butter and shallots. Or maybe a tatare. Always a tatare. Actually the first time I had elderberry capers, was in a tatare at No2 in Copenhagen.
Right now is the perfect time to pick and pickle elderberries. One very important thing about elderberries – both ripe and unripe – is that they contain hydrogencyanid, which is poisonous if you eat the berries raw. But after first a bit of fermentation and then pickling, you are good to go. You could also just boil them, but I wouldn’t really know what to use boiled unripe elderberries for. The hydrogencyanid is quite volatile, with a boiling point at around 26 degrees celcius. So the ripe berries just need a quick blanche to be safe. Ok, now back to the berries. This is how you make elderberry capers. (you can use exactly the same method for creating capers from nasturtium and ramson seeds – just a tip)
Elderberry capersPrint Recipe
- 500g of unripe elderberries, stems removed.
- 100g salt
- 550g water
- 150g sugar
- 500g white wine vinegar
Wash the berries thoroughly after removing the berries from the stems.
Dissolve the salt in the water. Pour the mixture over the berries.
Let the berries slowly ferment on the kitchen table or in another warm place, only covered with some cloth or a kitchen towel. It is important, that the bowl is in glas or plastic. Metal can prevent the fermentation process to happen. Let the berries ferment for 2-3 days. You should see a change in color from bright green to army green.
On the 2nd or 3rd day: Drain the liquids from the berries.
Bring the vinegar and sugar to a boil. Make sure all the sugar is dissolved.
Transfer the berries to clean, scalded pickling glasses. Top with the pickling liquids and close.
Let the berries pickle for at least 3 days before eating. Preferably a week.