Pickled Eggs

Course : Appetizers
Serves: 1
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1 dozen small eggs*
2 cups vinegar, white
1 medium habanero pepper
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons black pepper
2 tablespoons pickling spice
2 teaspoons sugar
1 medium onion, minced OR
6 tablespoons onion, powdered
2 cloves garlic

Preparation / Directions:

* The smaller the better. quail eggs are nice but a lot of work. I love pickled eggs and am planning to include them in a Christmas gift package my wife, kids and I are putting together. My question is "How long will they last unrefrigerated?". My recipe calls for refrigeration, but with all the vinegar and salt, I would think they would be "cured". See recipe below. Eggs: Cover with water and heat to just boiling over medium-high heat. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 10 min. Drain water from eggs. Now take the hot eggs one by one (wear a kitchen mitten, the darned things are hot!), crack them with a spoon or just whack them on the counter and drop them into a pot of cold water. This makes them much easier to peel whole. I'll resist the urge to bore everyone with the thermodynamics involved. Place eggs in refrigerator overnight to chill. Pickling Mixture: This is the basic mixture, as with BBQ sauce, feel free to improvise: ground mustard, hot sauce, chipotle peppers, curry, red pepper flakes, white pepper, whatever sounds good. Bring the entire mixture to a boil for approx. 10 min. Pour over peeled, chilled eggs, a large mason jar holds about 1 doz. small eggs. Seal lid and place in fridge. They're good the next day, even better the next and the next. I'm not sure if the refrigerator is necessary or if it's just because they're better

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