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Pickles--Cook-Off 32


Pam R
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I pickle garlic all the time.  I buy it in those big supermarket econo-tubs and pickle it just as I would my favourite dill pickle recipe.  It's bloody delicious.

Just found this thread, thanks to Annecros. Mr. Bueno, what do you do with your pickled garlic? Just eat it with crackers or something?

Hi Jaymes :)

Most of the time, I just munch on it straight up out of the jar. But in terms of "proper" uses, I use it always in an antipasta platter. I sometimes mince it to add to vinaigrettes depending on the flavour profile. I also add it, thinly sliced to quick Asian cucumber pickles. I've added it (minced) to shrimp ceviche as well, even though I fully realize that it's heresy towards authentic ceviche. Oh, and minced atop raw oysters as well.

Edited by Bueno (log)
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I recently pickled Brussels sprouts, which I thought to be a unique and ingenious thing to do, but fully realize I'm likely the 5 millionth person to think that. So I resolved to the idea that it'd just probably taste good. I was right! They're delicious little buggers. Reminiscent of sauerkraut, it's much more vibrant and fresh. Sliced thinly on a mandolin, and I'd much prefer it anywhere sauerkraut is normally utilized.

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Anybody like to make sauerkraut? We're having cool weather here in Japan, and once the thermometer hits 16-17 deg.C (60-ish F), I'll be sharpening my cabbage-slicing knife!

I have never made sauerkraut primarily because the nearby German community in Lunenburg does it better than I ever will:

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I have been thinking (fantasizing, really) about pickling some mussels. Anybody try that?

Peter Gamble aka "Peter the eater"

I just made a cornish game hen with chestnut stuffing. . .

Would you believe a pigeon stuffed with spam? . . .

Would you believe a rat filled with cough drops?

Moe Sizlack

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I've wanted to try sauerkraut (LOVE sauerkraut), but I've got a recipe from an old cooperative extension cookbook that's a little intimidating (there's a part with wooden sticks and cheesecloth that I just can't visualize to save my life). Anyone have a nice simple approach to sauerkraut?

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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Cool - thanks ladies! Cabbages are starting to show up at the market, and I think it's high time I tried my hand at kraut.

I'm also smack in the middle of collard heaven here in Raleigh, so I can see having a couple of comparative cabbage vs. collard batches going.

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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  • 1 year later...

I just bought a rather large chunk of old cheddar that I'll be feeding off for the next few weeks. My favourite thing to eat with cheese is a bit of pickle. I normally make some quick pickled onions like these. But I'm in the mood for something a bit different - in the vein of Branston pickle, but perhaps not as complicated to make. My parameters: I have a small kitchen, with no canning equipment or storage. I need a quick pickle, in a small batch - something that'll yield about 2 litres (I can give some away). Daikon, Japanese turnips, cauliflower, leeks, carrots are all in season here.

Any suggestions?

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ever since I saw this photo in johnnyd's blog, I've been thinking about Maine mustard pickles. I just found some fantastic cukes so I'm going to be using the recipe Carrot Top references here. I'll report back in a few weeks.

ETA: When I started preparing the recipe, I thought that the brine/cuke proportions were a bit off, and indeed they are. You can cut the recipe in half and easily cover three pounds of pickle cukes, probably up to four.

Edited by chrisamirault (log)

Chris Amirault

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Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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I make a lot of pickles but strangely enough not cucumbers. Not counting the different kinds of kimchi, my favorite pickles are either garlic or peppers. I just made a quart jar of pickled peppers (jalepeno and korean long peppers). The brine is a soy, sugar and vinegar base and they are tasty. The alepneo are a little hotter than I like however, but they were so fresh, I couldn't pass them up.

I pickled bunch of garlic in a vinegar based brine.

Soup

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Reporting back on these Maine mustard pickles. After two weeks and a daily shake or two, they were ready for a try:

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Color and texture are excellent, and they were about 55F when I got them from the basement; they should crisp up soon. The flavor is very close, but I'm missing a peppery note that's not from lack of mustard. Here's a revised recipe:

2-4 lbs pickling cucumbers, scrubbed

1/2 c Salt

1 qt vinegar

1/2 lb light brown sugar

1/2 c dry mustard

10-12 black peppercorns, cracked

1 qt water

Slit cucumbers down the middle but don't cut them in half. Mix all other ingredients and pour over cucumbers; seal. Store in cool, dark place for 2-3 weeks, giving them a shake every day.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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  • 2 weeks later...

Last summer I made a fermented chile paste (lactobacillus fermentation, same method that makes sauerkraut and sour dills).

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I threw some Thai chiles, red bell peppers (to cut the heat a little), ginger, garlic, and salt in the food processor. Then I added a little liquid drained from yogurt, to get a lactobacillus culture started. I jarred it and set it on the counter to culture. I started eating it about two weeks later.

I've still got a jar left and I know it won't last nearly until new chiles start to come in this summer. It's so good it makes me cry (or that could just be the tongue-searing heat).

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It IS suspiciously simple, isn't it? But I've had fantastic luck with this method. I took a lacto-fermentation class and they broke it down for us: You can ferment ANYTHING. Just follow that same process:

-- cut and mix your veggies

-- add plenty of salt (at least 1 Tbl per finished quart)

-- add a little yogurt liquid (1/4 cup per quart -optional, but helps you know you're going to get the beasties you want)

-- pack everything tightly into clean glass jars

-- if it's something like sauerkraut or kimchi that will make its own juice, ram it into the jar until the juice rises; if it's something like cukes or green beans, fill the jar with water so that with the salt it becomes a brine

-- keep solids covered with liquid during fermentation, weighting and topping with brine if necessary

-- check it daily and eat it when it tastes good!

I have a tendency now to keep several jars, many experimental, working on my counter. It hasn't let me down yet.

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  • 3 months later...

What recipe is my mother making?

I never bought a cucumber pickle that tasted like what my mother used to make. They all seem too sweet, or too bland, or too acidic. I've never tried to make them myself, but now that she's visiting, and that I have cucumbers, garlic, and a jar, this may be the right time to try her recipe. I haven't made it yet, but this is what she told me:

Get enough cucumbers so that they all stand up in the jar and don't move. Cut a tiny piece of both ends of each cucumber. Boil enough water with salt, and let it cool.

Add a little bit of vinager and sugar. Pour over the cucumbers. Add two or three garlic heads after pressing them a little bit with my hands. Add peppercorns, fennel seeds, other seeds.

Cover the jar with cheesecloth only so that the pickles can breath, and take it outside. They should be ready to eat in about a week.

I'm sure she got this recipe from her mother. Does anyone have a similar recipe with more accurate measurements?

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  • 1 month later...

I prefer refrigerator pickles to the canned ones, but I don't have enough space to store what I want in the fridge. (Talking cucumber pickles here.) Last year I tried the standard recipe from the USDA (I think) website. The pickles turned out MUCH too salty, pretty limp, and a bit on the gray side.

I've looked at the pickle-cook-off thread, but wasn't sure I saw a consensus. So if anyone has any great canned pickle recipes, or resources such as books or websites that you'd recommend. I'd greatly appreciate it.

TIA, Steve

Check out our Fooddoings and more at A View from Eastmoreland
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the Ball Blue Book and the Ball Complete Home Preserving books should get you started. It's not that easy to have the same crunch as those that you keep in the fridge with those that you heat process. Supposedly adding grape leaves helps to keep them a bit crisper, I have not tried that yet.

You should be able to find those books in any library. I think the ball website might have some recipes too.

AFAIK the really crunch ones in the cold storage are all pickled w/o boiling them. I made some a while ago that were in brine over night, then went in the sterilized glasses and got hot pickling liquid poured over, but those had to stay in the fridge if I recall correctly. They were quite good though.

Good luck and share if you find a recipe for hot canning that keeps them nice and crisp!

Oliver

"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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  • 1 month later...

I recently put a bunch of cucumbers in brine to make pickles (using the "Natural Pickle" method from Ruhlman's Charcuterie). Unfortunately, some of them didn't end up fully submerged, and those ones have started to go moldy after about 5 days. Obviously, I'm going to throw those out, but can anyone tell me if it's safe to eat the others - the ones that stayed fully submerged? Is there anything I need to do to rescue them? Or do I just have to pitch the whole batch?

Thanks!

Matthew Kayahara

Kayahara.ca

@mtkayahara

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First off, use a plate that has been sterilized in boiling water to keep everything submerged in future.

The stuff that has been submerged is probably fine with this kind of pickle, if the brine was strong enough, unless something very horrible (black or orange mold) was growing on top of the liquid.

If there is a fine film on top of the liquid, skim it off, boil up the liquid, cool it, and re-submerge the sound cucumbers in it (in the fridge, if you think they are sufficiently pickled and just want to keep them in good condition until you eat them).

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Thanks for the pointers. The brine was 50g/l, and there was no scary-looking black or orange mold growing. I've submerged the rest of them with a plate, and will finish fermenting them, then boil the brine, bottle and store them in the fridge this weekend. I really need to find a better way of fermenting large quantities of veggies! If only I had a proper pickle crock.

Matthew Kayahara

Kayahara.ca

@mtkayahara

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  • 5 weeks later...
I recently put a bunch of cucumbers in brine to make pickles (using the "Natural Pickle" method from Ruhlman's Charcuterie).

How did those "natural pickles" turn out? I just started a small jar of baby cucumbers using the 5% salt brine with a couple cloves of garlic, onion and dill.

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Hi everyone,

I have a quick question that I hope you can help me with. I made some half-sour pickles this week. The pickles fill 6 wide mouth, pint-size mason jars. I originally thought I'd keep the pickles in the fridge. Now I've decided that I should have processed these pickles so I can store them out of the fridge.

I'm wondering how to recover. Can I just put the jars (now filled with pickles and cool liquid) into a water bath for, say, 10 minutes? Or should I remove the brine, boil it, return it to the jars, and then process it? Or am I past the point of no return?

Thanks in advance.

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