I’ve been having an all-out love affair with pickles ever since the great pickled onions fling of 2012.
My children still speak of it in hushed tones. Since then every vegetable I see is in danger of becoming a pickle. I especially enjoy quick pickles (AKA Quickles) because, well… I’m into nearly instant gratification. You too? Read on.
Some veggies are simply asking to be pickles. I tend to habitually buy the veggies that go on sale: broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber and onions. I also love that quickling adds versatility to everyday veggies.
I’m still a novice when it comes to proper methods of food preservation known as canning and I am learning. But until I learn to channel my inner depression-era grandmother: I need my pickle fix. This is why I quickle.
Any Vegetable Quickles
What I love about this technique is you can make just one jar of quickles, or a whole bunch. It’s up to you. To figure the amount of brine you need to make; slice your intended veggie and stuff them in the jar(s). Really pack them in there.
Pour water in the filled jar(s) until it’s full. Pour off the water into a measuring cup and note the amount. Pour off half the water and replace with vinegar and proceed following the directions below.
What you’ll need:
Vegetables of your choice – like cucumber, onion, radishes, zucchini, carrots, cauliflower.
To make 2 cups of brine:
1 cup vinegar – use white, cider, white wine, rice or any combo to total one cup;
1 cup water;
1 tablespoon kosher salt;
1 tablespoon sugar;
1 tablespoon fresh or dried spices and/or herbs – I like dried pickling spice blend.
Wash and slice your veggies and pack them into meticulously cleaned jars. To prepare the brine, pour the vinegar and water into a saucepan with the rest of the ingredients (salt, sugar and spices), bring to a boil and pour right into the jar with the veggies. Place a lid on the jar and store in the fridge overnight.
Simple. I know, right? The longer you let them set the “pickle-ier” they will be. Harder veggies like cauliflower and carrot take longer to develop flavor. Softer veggies like cucumber are ready to rock by morning. Keep refrigerated and use within six months.
If eating pickles by the bowlful isn’t your thing you can sprinkle them like fairy dust to add excitement to meals. Use pickled onion to make a burger even better, serve zippy zucchini with grilled fish or chicken.
Chop mixed pickled veggies in a food processor with mayo to make dip or sandwich spread. Pickled broccoli and cauliflower make lovely chilled appetizers for a summer BBQ and a jar of quickles makes a lovely hostess gift.
With summer right around the corner, you’re never more than one day away from crisp, cool, take-all-the-credit, I made these with love, pickles.
I hope you agree, that’s a dangerously good thing.
Frugal Food Finds contributed by Patti Diamond from Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous! www.divasonadime.com Join us on Facebook at DivasOnADimeDotCom.