Happy Independence Day to all my U.S.-based readers! :-) I’m sure that many of you will be filling up on grilled burgers and hot dogs at some point today. So I thought it would be fitting for today’s post to focus on one of the mainstays of the traditional backyard barbecue spread: pickles!
Personally, pickles have always had a special place in my heart. I tend to have trouble controlling myself around snacks that are both crunchy and salty, and eating a few pickles is usually enough to scratch that itch and prevent me from inhaling half a bag of potato chips. ;-)
But I had never really considered trying to make my own pickles at home until quite recently! I was happy to discover that it’s actually quite easy to make homemade pickles, and they’re really delicious too! They have a fresher flavor than their store-bought counterparts, and they’re delightfully crunchy too. Give it a try for yourself and let me know what you think!
How To Make Homemade Pickles
1 cucumber, cut in half then sliced into spears
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp kosher salt
2 tsp pickling spices*
2 cups water
*Note: You can buy pre-mixed pickling spices or mix up your own if you prefer! See the recipe for pickling spices near the bottom of this post.
Add the cucumber spears and minced garlic to a wide-mouth mason jar.
In a mixing bowl, combine the apple cider vinegar, kosher salt, pickling spices, and water.
Stir until the salt dissolves, then pour the finished brine into the jar.
If necessary, place a glass weight on top of the cucumbers spears to keep them submerged in the brine. Then cover the jar lightly by perching the lid on top, or else use a rubber band to secure a piece of cheesecloth over the opening.
Place the jar somewhere out of direct sunlight and let it sit for two to four days (or until the cucumbers taste like pickles!) :-) Then secure the lid on the jar and store them in your fridge.
As long as the pickles stay submerged in the brine, they’ll keep in your fridge for up to six months!
Pickling Spice Blend
2 Tbsp mustard seed
1 Tbsp allspice
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp ground ginger
2 whole cloves
1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf, crumbled
4 Tbsp dried dill seed
Add everything to a bowl and then stir to mix. Store the finished spice mix in an airtight container.
What foods do you like to put pickles on or in?