Fresh Dill Pickles

by NICK AMMATURO on April 24th 2010

Recipe courtesy of, “Quick Pickles“ by Chris Schlesinger

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This book was introduced to me by one of my co-workers whose into cooking even more than I am. He makes batches of pickles and distributes them to everyone in his team. Just as soon as he hands them out, people are already asking for more. It’s always nice to learn more about the people you work with everyday, it adds a whole new depth to them and I have a new found respect for someone I am just getting to know. I would have never thought that I would be making my own pickles, it was a realm that I never thought of exploring. Now that I have started, I can’t stop. I am having the best time learning about what spices to use, what herbs to experiment with and how something can be so tasty from just a few ingredients.

I am introducing you to the first pickle that I tried from the book, the Fresh Dill Cucumber Pickle, its been one of my favorites so far. I will make sure to share as I go through and try some others out.

Ingredients

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  • 5-6 pounds of pickling cucumbers (less than 5″ long)
  • 1 whole head of garlic, cloves peeled and minced
  • Bunch of Fresh Dill
  • 1/4 Cup pickling spices (see note below)
  • 3 cups red wine vinegar
  • 6 cups water
  • 1/2 cup kosher or other coarse salt
  • 3 small chilies (optional), slit in half
  • 2/3 cup peeled, finely grated horseradish (optional)
  • Grape Leaves (optional)

Pickling Spices*:

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  • 1 TBLS coriander seed
  • 1 TBLS mustard seed
  • 2 tsp celery seed
  • 2 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 4 crumbled bay leaves

*For the pickling spices, I would place these all in a dry saute pan over medium heat and toast. Moving frequently, just a few minutes until you start to smell them. Remove from heat, to avoid burning them.

Time to tickle your…

First trim and discard the ends of the cucumbers. This is to speed up the absorption of the brine into the cucumbers. You can keep them whole, halve them, quarter them, or slice them into 1/4″rounds. I have made them every way and I prefer to quarter some and to slice them into 1/4″ rounds (I use a simple mandolin that literally cost me $11.00 at a hardware store).

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Next, you’re going to pack all the ingredients into the jar, crock, or bowl. I start with some dill, garlic and a grape leaf on the bottom. Then I start adding the cucumbers, savings the smaller ones for the top. I divide the pickling spice among how many jars I have and I begin to sprinkle it in as I am filling it with the cucumbers.

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In a nonreactive pot, bring the vinegar, water, and salt to a boil over high heat, stirring to dissolve the salt. Pour the hot mixture over the cucumbers, covering as much as you can. Allow to cool at room temperature, then cover, refrigerate, and in just a day or 2, the pickles will be ready to eat.

These pickles will keep, covered and refrigerated for at least 2 months.

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2 Responses to “Fresh Dill Pickles

  • Reblogged this on and commented:If your gaedrn looks like mine, here are a lot of yellow cucumber blossoms hidden beneath giant leaves with a shared dream of pickledom..never tried pickling anything, but this is worth a go, I think. Could be this year’s homemade Christmas present stay tuned.

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