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First taste of the pickles

I came back to the office on Tuesday; I’d worked from home Monday because my subway line was still on limited service Monday morning, as the MTA cleaned up after the hurricane, and I opted not to fight the crowds. I thought I’d mark the occasion by bringing in most of the cookies I’d made on Sunday, and also brought in two jars of my pickles: one jar of regular dills and one jar of hot-pepper dills.

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I opened the regular jar and ate one of the pickles before announcing their presence to my co-workers, just to make sure something hadn’t gone horribly awry. (“Are they supposed to taste like oven cleaner? Is that a thing?”) They’re very sour; it’s only been three weeks since I canned them, and I think they might mellow slightly in the next few weeks as the flavors continue to blend. But they’re dilly with a pepper and cumin undertone, and reasonably crunchy except for the seedy middle part. You can taste the garlic. I was pleased.

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Later in the day I thought I’d snap the pictures here, and used the fork to hold one of the hot-pepper dills out of the brine. Once I’d finished shooting, I ate that pickle, my first taste of that variety. Wow. That is a pickle that challenges you. That is a pickle that walks up to you and thumps you on the chest to get your attention. It’s got all the sour punch of the regular dills, with a slow-burning fire coming in after the initial taste. If you don’t like hot or sour food you’d probably hate it, but I was thrilled.

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A number of my co-workers were pleased too; I may have converted at least two to pickling. (There’s still time! There are still cucumbers and celery and other good things in the Greenmarket!) Those who weren’t into pickles enjoyed the cookies. Judging from the paucity of crumbs left by late afternoon, nobody was bothered about the fact that the cookies weren’t magazine-pretty.

3 Comments

  1. Adair says:

    Congrats on pickle success. I have been making drinking vinegars (Raspberry and Nectarine) this summer and they have been a treat. Soon I will tackle Sauerkraut.

  2. Sounds good! I’ve never been into sauerkraut but maybe that’s one of those things I only think I don’t like because I haven’t had the good stuff.

  3. Monique says:

    I used to make canned pliecks, but as I’ve gotten busier and the children are grown and it seems that I work more in my office than in the kitchen, I have started making refrigerator pliecks. It’s my own recipe, so I don’t if anyone else does it this way. I slice up either English cukes or small crunch ones from the farmer’s market. I also slice a lot of Vidalia onions. I put a half water/half vinegar (maybe 6-8 C.)solution with some sugar (can’t say how much maybe almost a cup.) Then I put it in the microwave until it’s very hot but not boiling. I pour it over the pliecks in a big jar and add a lot of dill weed. When it cools, put it in the fridge. They would keep for weeks and weeks, but they never last that long. We eat them every day on bread and butter, as a side dish, or just as a snack. Another thing I do is to make the solution a little sweeter, using white vinegar, leave out the dill, but put in some sliced Thai chilies. Those little green and red ones I buy in the Oriental market. Not too many, because they really pack a punch. I also don’t put onions in this one. If you don’t have the chilies, you could just throw in some red pepper flakes. The sweet next to the heat makes a great pickle. I’m glad I found you here I love sites like this. Jeanne

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