August 31, 2011

Easy refrigerator pickles

Refrigerator pickles made with bush and lemon cucumbers

Easy refrigerator pickles

refrigerator pickles

Khavanu turns 3 today. I started blogging (I still find that word awkward) as a way to share recipes and  store my favorite recipes online. I didn't think I'd stick with it. It has grown into something I really enjoy doing. Some outcomes I'm generally happy about are that my photography skills have improved, I've grown as a cook, and I've been able to see how progress has been made in the garden. After moving to Belgium a year and a half ago, I began including travel posts. However, my writing is still awful! Isn't it?

My goals, since this is a kitchen sink of ideas, are:
- to try out more regional Belgian (or other) foods in the upcoming posts and cook more foods with beer.
- Write better, clearer instructions from recipes that have been tested at least three times.
- Challenge myself to write more nutrition public health posts.

In keeping with my goals, and honoring my very first dorky post, here is my tried and true version of refrigerator pickles (which I've been using and adapting from Alton Brown's Good Eats!). I've made these pickles dozens of times. The cucumbers came from my garden and are a mixture of bush cucumbers and lemon cucumbers.

Easy refrigerator pickles
Yield: 3 jars, 8 oz each
Ingredients, listed in order of use

Sterilized jars and lids, such as 3 8 oz ball jars, or a mixture of other clean glass jars and lids
4-6 small-medium cucumbers
multiple cloves garlic (1 smashed clove for each jar)
1 onion, sliced in rings or half-rings
1 cup water
1 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup white wine vinegar (or champagne vinegar if you can find it)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp plus 2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tsp pickling spice (optional)

  1. With all clean utensils prep the cucumbers by slicing into 1/4" slices or prep them as spears. Place 1 smashed garlic clove in each jar. Fill with cucumbers and onions, and set aside.
  2. In a non-reactive medium sauce-pan combine water, cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, sugar, and salt. Stir to combine. Add in mustard seeds, coriander seeds, turmeric and pickling spice and heat up over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer and let it simmer for 4 minutes to wake up the spices.
  3. Fill each jar with the pickling liquid, and let stand. Top the jars with any remaining liquid. Once cooled off, tighten the lids and place in the fridge.

The pickles should be ready in as little as 3 days, but a week is better for them to set. You can easily double the recipe if you have more pickles or jars. 

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