Fresh onions store for a long time in the pantry (and/or freezer), however not for as long as to reach the beginning of the next harvest… so we went looking for a recipe that wasn’t full of strong flavours with the onions, so this relish can be utilised in many cooking recipes or served straight from the jar with other accompaniments. Ideal for adding into burgers, quiche, savoury scrolls and other baked goods, rosemary onion relish is also fantastic on crackers with cream cheese (or brie), or with bruschetta.
Yield: 4 cups
  (1 Litre / 1 Quart)
Yield: 18 cups
    (4.5 Litres / 9 Pints)
Onions, Brown, Red or White  
1.3kg (3 pounds)
6kg (13 1/2 pounds)
Fresh Rosemary, Finely Diced  
1 tablespoon
4 1/2 tablespoons
Sugar, White  
1 cup
4 1/2 cups
Apple Cider Vinegar (5% Acidity)  
1 cup
4 1/2 cups
Soy Sauce  
1 tablespoon
4 1/2 tablespoons
Salt, Finely Ground  
1 teaspoon
White Pepper, Finely Ground  
1 teaspoon

1.  Clean jars (or bottles) and equipment by washing in hot soapy water and rinsing well before use.
2.  Peel and finely dice onions. Wash and finely dice the rosemary.
3.  Place lids into a heatproof bowl and cover the lids with boiling water. Remove the  lids from the water when you are ready to place them onto the jars to seal.  
4.  Combine the onions, rosemary and sugar in a large pan. Bring to a boil then simmer for 10 minutes or so, until onions have released their juice and reduced a little. Add remaining ingredients and cook until thick. Season to taste.
5.  Remove jars from hot water and place onto a heatproof surface i.e. tea towel.
6.  Fill jars with hot rosemary onion relish, filling to 0.5cm (1/4 inch) from the rim of each jar.
TIP: use a jar funnel to fill jars.
7.  Using a non-metal utensil, remove any bubbles and add more relish if required to correct the headspace if it dropped below 0.5cm (1/4 inch) from the jar rim.
8.  Wipe jar rims with a damp paper towel to remove any food residue.
9.  Remove lids from hot water and seal jars i.e. twist to secure “fingertip tight”.
10.  Process jars in water bath for time as listed on the chart below.
11.  Return jars of rosemary onion relish into the pot of boiling water and boil for the processing time stated below. Start the timer once the water comes back to a full boil.
12.  Turn off the heat source once the time is up. Remove jars from hot water after 5 more minutes. Cool jars overnight on a heatproof surface i.e. wooden board or towel. Do not adjust lids during this time.
13.  After 12-24 hours: check jars have sealed before labelling and dating clearly.
14.  Store jars of rosemary onion relish in a cool, dark and dry place (i.e. pantry) for up to 12 months. Jar lids should remain tightly sealed during storage, and not flex up or down when pressed (which indicates jar seal failure, do not consume).
TIP: wait 4-6 weeks before opening vinegar preserves, to allow the vinegar flavour to subside.
15.  Refrigerate jars upon opening and consume contents within 5-7 days.
o   Do not add any oil to this recipe;
o   Store fresh rosemary in a jar of water in the refrigerator to keep it fresh and soft. You can also dehydrate any leftover rosemary leaves;
o   Add extra rosemary if you like;
o   Substitute apple cider vinegar for other vinegars if they are minimum 5% acidity;
o   Substitute soy sauce for Worcestershire sauce;
o   Try using brown sugar, red onions and balsamic vinegar;
o   Substitute the rosemary for fresh thyme (and add 1-2 finely minced garlic cloves);
o   The sugar can be reduced in this recipe, however it balances the vinegar flavour and helps to draw out moisture from the onions in the beginning of the recipe, so stir carefully and reduce heat to prevent sticking.




Processing Time for   ROSEMARY ONION RELISH   in a Boiling Water Canner


Jar Size
1,000 feet
Altitude 1,001 - 3,000 feet
Altitude 3,001

- 6,000 feet

6,000 feet
Hot Pack
1 Litre
10 minutes
15 minutes
20 minutes
25 minutes

Author: Megan Radaich          
Image credit: Megan Radaich          
Learn More: Pickling Guide, available HERE

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