This is my first time making pickles. MY. FIRST. TIME. That is ridiculous. Because they really aren’t that hard to make, and they’re my favorite things in the world. #1. No contest. (Sorry friends and family)
Everyone who knows me well knows about my love for pickles. About how I used to ask for them (and receive them) as Christmas presents. About the series of photos from when I was younger (#1 asking for pickle, #2 being denied pickle, #3 uncontrollable sobbing, #4 sister brings pickle, #5 instant happiness). About how I eat pickles before anything, with anything, after anything (much like a pregnant woman with a vinegar addiction). About how I used to drink the pickle juice after I’d polished off another jar.
Now, let’s be clear. These are “quick” pickles. Which means they don’t hold the same place in my heart as the pickles that have been brining in sweet vinegary spice for months, years even. They’re what delis call “new pickles,” and they’re bright green instead of that acidic nuclear waste kind of green color of true pickles. Still, these were delicious. DELICIOUS. The jar was gone in 24 hours. Oops.
We didn’t have any coriander seeds, and since I am what we call a “cheap mother f-er,” I found an old old (older than those golden raisins old) jar of pickling spices and went through and picked out all the coriander seeds for my own use. I have no idea what the shelf life of coriander seeds is, but my guess is that I should’ve just ponied up the $4.99 for a new bottle.
So now that I know how to make pickles, there are really few other things I need to know. In life. I can make an egg sandwich, I can make a pickle, I can fumble through my taxes, and I once fixed the toilet all by myself. I think that’s that. Let me just put up the “no vacancy” sign outside my brain and let’s wrap up this whole learning new things business, shall we?
Quick Cucumber Pickles
from Moosewood Restaurant Celebrates (you: enough with the moosewood! me: shut your pie hole)
[I one-thirded the below recipe]
3 twelve-inch english cucumbers
1 medium onion, cut into quarters and thinly sliced crosswise
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh dill sprigs
3 or 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 cups distilled white or rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp coriander seed
1/2 tsp ground mustard
2 tsps whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves, crumbled
1 1/2 tbsps salt, preferably coarse kosher salt
1/4 cup sugar
Cut the unpeeled cucumbers crosswise into 1/4-inch slices and place them in a large heatproof bowl along with the sliced onions, dill, and garlic. Place the vinegar, coriander, mustard, peppercorns, bay leaves, salt, and sugar in a nonreactive saucepan and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir until the sugar and salt dissolve.
Pour the hot mixture over the vegetables in the bowl and mix gently. Let stand for at least 1 hour or refrigerate overnight for optimal flavor.
Serve chilled or at room temperature. The cucumber pickles will keep pickling in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks.