As much as I love sandwiches it only makes sense that I love the things that can help them make them extra-special for lunch or dinner. That includes having a great side dish like potato salad, coleslaw or another kind of salad, just the right condiments and. of course, pickles. The thing about pickles is that there are some really good ones that you can get when you go out or buy them from the store or farmers’ market and then there are some really bad ones. You know the bad ones as soon as you get them – limp, lifeless and they have no flavor at all or have been sitting for too long. As much as I love pickles, the price for a good pickle is pretty darn expensive today. The good ones in the stores are three or four dollars a jar and you pay just as much or even more at farmers’ markets for good pickles. Now I have never been much of a person when it comes to canning and preserving myself; I just don’t have the space for everything you need or the space to store anything. However, I did want to find a way to make a good, quick batch of pickles so I could have some on hand when I wanted them. I got myself a good jar and set about looking for a recipe and I found this one from Food and Wine that seemed just right for some homemade dill pickles.
Homemade Dill Pickles
1 1/2 cups distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
3/4 teaspoon dill seeds
2 cups hot water
2 pounds Kirby cucumbers, sliced 1/4 inch thick or sliced into spears
3/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh dill
3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
In a large, heat-proof measuring cup, combine the vinegar, sugar, salt, mustard seeds, coriander seeds and dill seeds with the hot water and stir the mixture until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Let the brine cool.
In a large bowl, toss the cucumbers with the fresh dill and the garlic. Place the cucumbers, dill and garlic into a jar with a tight seal or leave them in the large bowl. Pour the brine over the cucumbers and turn to coat the cucumbers (if they are in the bowl; if you have them in the jar they are fine as is). If you are using a bowl, place a small plate over the cucumbers to keep them submerged in the bowl, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap. If you have the pickles in a jar, close the jar tightly. Refrigerate the pickles overnight, stirring once or twice. Serve cold.
When I first looked at the recipe I was skeptical that I would be able to get good flavor out of pickles with such an easy recipe and with them just sitting overnight, but boy I was wrong. These pickles have fantastic flavor that they pick up from all of the spices, the fresh dill and the garlic. If you like garlic with your pickles these are ideal because the flavor is there without completing overpowering the pickles. If you really like garlic you could always add a few more chopped cloves to the mix, but I thought they were perfect as is. I have been making these pretty consistently for a couple of months now and once you have all of the ingredients on hand the only cost of making them is buying the pickles. I get a package of 6 Kirby cucumbers for $2.50 and it makes lots of pickle spears that last me for weeks, so the cost savings is pretty good in my opinion. These pickles are perfect to go with any type of sandwich or a burger and will be great for picnics, barbecues or any party. I brought a jar with me to the Outer Banks a few weeks ago and every ate them up. It’s definitely worth the little bit of time it takes to make them.
That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!