Monday, July 23, 2012

Pickle Grand Champion

I made that title up.  I have no idea what it would take to become an actual pickle grand champion, or if one can even BE a pickle grand champion.  But in my little contest of three pickles, this was the clear winner.  I would eat them in a boat and I would eat them with a goat.  (Deepest apologies to Dr. Seuss) Seriously.  I love these pickles.  They are tart and sweet and flavorful and easy to make.  I'm going to make another batch today.  The first ones went entirely too quickly.  Also, don't skimp on the onions and don't be afraid to eat them.  They are crunchy and delicious, not merely an agent for flavoring the pickles.

I made this using stellacarolyn's recipe from My Family Table and Serious Eats's recipe for Bread and Butter pickles.
The recipe below DOES NOT MAKE ENOUGH PICKLES.  You might as well double it.  Otherwise you'll be lamenting lost pickles.

8.5 oz kirby cucumbers.
1/2 small vidalia onion
1 T sea salt
1 t mustard seed
1/2 t red pepper flakes
1/4 t celery seed
3/4 C white vinegar
1/2 C sugar

Slice your cucumbers in 3/8" slices (again, not a precise measure, totally guesstimated.) Slice your onion.  Put them in a small bowl and toss with the 1 T sea salt.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes.  Remove, rinse and pat dry.  Heat up the vinegar and add the sugar.  Stir to dissolve.  Add the mustard seed, red pepper flakes and celery seed.  Bring it all up to a boil, then turn off burner.  Fill a (clean, empty, dry) jar (I used a spaghetti sauce jar) with the cucumber and onion slices.  Pour over the pickling brine, leave it to cool on the counter a bit and then pop it in the fridge.  Pickle Perfection.

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