I love the crisp, crunchy dill pickles that my grandmother used to make in these insanely huge jars when I was younger. She must have gone easy on the vinegar, because they were much less acidic than other pickles I've tried. That let the dill flavor come through strong — fresh and clean and bright. No wonder dill is one of my favorite herbs, right up there with mint.
But I'd always been intimidated by the process of actually making my own pickles. Mason jars? Brines? Fermentation? Just reading about it was daunting.
Turns out, though, pickles are pretty much the easiest things ever. They're easier than making crepes. Way easier than making gnudi. In short, they're probably simpler than every recipe I've ever posted on this blog. At least with the 24-hour pickle recipe I used.
I was surprised you can build that much flavor in 24 hours. In one day, mild cucumbers became tangy and garlicky and laced with the essence of dill. I'd reduce the amount of white vinegar next time — just to try to nail my grandmother's version — but this recipe's a keeper. The pickles were addictive and kept their crunch.
24-hour garlic-and-dill pickles
recipe from here
1-quart mason jar with lid
6 small cucumbers
3 cloves garlic
8 sprigs fresh dill (or to taste... I probably used 10-12)
1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 tablespoon sugar
1 and 1/2 tablespoons salt
2/3 cup white vinegar
1 cup water
Wash the mason jar and lid in hot, soapy water. Rinse well and let air dry.
In a covered container, combine coriander seeds, sugar, salt and vinegar. Close the lid tightly and shake vigorously until the sugar and salt dissolve. Add the water and set aside.
Quarter the cucumbers lengthwise. Peel the garlic cloves and cut in half.
Pack the cucumbers, sliced garlic and dill tightly in the clean mason jar. Pour the brine mixture over the cucumbers. Tap the jar on the counter to release any air bubbles. Top the jar off with extra water if the cucumber tops are exposed.
Screw the lid tightly on the jar, and refrigerate 24 hours before tasting. The pickles last up to one month refrigerated.