Pickles!

Pickles, for me, are the second most delicious snack in the world compared to olives. Maybe its the salty spicy flavor punch, the crisp bite, or the fact that you can eat an entire jar (juice and all) and still remain under 200 calories. You can safely say that there is a lot more to be said about the almighty juicy pickle than for it to be a just sidekick to a sandwich or burger.

Brief pickle history:

Pickles are one of the oldest foods in the world, dating back 4,000 years. References toward the pickle are made in The Holy Bible and in the works of Shakespeare. It is mentioned that Cleopatra attributed her attractiveness to a hearty diet of pickles. Pickles were the lifeblood for explorers on their long voyages out to sea, and used for the prevention of scurvy. Pickling was a method of food preservation, which was crucial during times of war. Pickles were on the list of rationed foods.

New York City also reminds me of pickles, its a classic NYC food. In the 19th and early 20th century, pickle pushcarts were very popular, particularly on the lower east side of Manhattan. “Pickles for a penny.” Nowadays you can find stores strictly dedicated to pickles and other pickled items. They offer tastings and provide you with interesting pickle facts. Famous NYC locations like “The Pickle Guys”  and “Guss’ Pickles”  are two hotspots you should visit.

The idea of pickling never occurred to me until my buddy Lori inspired me the other day with her batch of spicy pickled ginger chips and crispy cucumbers. They were delicious and I was thrilled after I realized how simple and inexpensive the pickling process is. There are various pickling methods, but the one I chose was the refrigerated pickle. I quickly followed suit with my own version. (see photo above)

For detailed pickling methods, check this site: http://pickle-recipes.itsallgud.com/technique.htm

First, what you need to do is boil the jar you’re going to use for the pickles. This kills all the microorganisms that linger even after a good wash. You can use a mason jar, or just re-use an old pickle or tomato sauce jar, like I did.  (It’s the perfect size)

In the meantime, I prepared my spice brine

Ingredients

  • 5 cloves of fresh finely chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp of coriander
  • 1 tbsp whole peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp of red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup of purified water
  • 1 cup of white vinegar (any flavor would suffice)
  • 1 handful of chopped fresh dill
  • 1 – 2 tbsp kosher salt

(Pickling time: Allow 3 to 5 days in the refrigerator before consumption.)

Spices for the pickle brine

Then cut about 5 un-waxed medium cucumbers. (leave the skin on, makes a crunchier pickle) You can either cut them into slices, spears or leave them whole. (Whole pickles require more marination time)

Cucumbers spears

Cucumber spears in the spice brine, just before sealing the jar.

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4 Comments

Filed under Sexy food

4 responses to “Pickles!

  1. Emily Maria

    I loved pickles so much especially when I was pregnant with my second daughter. Now she has inherited my pickle and olive obsession. I will let her try this recipe she will love it.

    • I am going to make you a batch of my special pickles and send them your way.. they are so delicious, Em. You should make them. Super easy. Its just hard to wait for the days to pass.

  2. Homemade pickles are the best! I made a bunch this summer with slices of banana peppers tucked in the jars. It was a great combination. Your spice brine looks like a good one. Love the coriander.

    • Thanks for checking out my blog. Pickles are my fave snack and I can’t live without them. I am so glad I learned about pickling my own. Banana peppers are a great addition, I will try it when I pickle my next batch! 🙂

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