Sunday, July 24, 2016

Seasonal Canning Disorder + Refrigerator Dill Pickles

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...It's time for me to fess up. I've fallen victim to an incurable summer disease. Despite smaller quarters and the surrender of equipment, farm stands continue to lure me much as the Sirens attempted to lure the Argonauts to their destruction. As a child, my mother would liken my odd behaviors to "stages" - temporary fixations that would pass in time. Most of them did. However, this urge to put food by has dogged my adult years, and it shows no sign of abating. The Silver Fox refers to my affliction as Seasonal Canning Disorder and while he doesn't look forward to it, he puts up with my need to put by (food). While thumbing through my condiment recipe collection, I kept coming back to the one for refrigerator dill pickles. It's a personal favorite of mine, but more importantly, it is one of my most popular recipes and has never received negative feedback. No collection of my favorite recipes would be complete without it. I prefer refrigerated pickles to the conventionally processed variety. They are less salty, have better color and retain a crispness that can't be found in the preserved variety. They are also much easier to make and can be prepared at any time of year. These are really great pickles. No special equipment is needed to prepare them and they are ready to eat the day after they are made. They can be safely kept in the refrigerator for two weeks, but I doubt you'll ever be able to put that to a test. The pickles will disappear long before a time trial can be completed. If you like pickles, or want to wow your family and friends with your cooking prowess, I hope you'll give this recipe a try. Here is how the pickles are made.

Refrigerator Dill Pickles...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by Bobby Flay

1-1/2 cups distilled white vinegar
1/4 to 1/3 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
3/4 teaspoon dill seeds
2 cups hot water
2 pounds Kirby cucumbers, sliced 1/4-inch thick
3/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh dill
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped


1) Combine vinegar, sugar, salt, mustard seeds, coriander seeds and dill seeds in a heatproof bowl. Add hot water and stir until sugar dissolves and liquid is clear. Cool to room temperature.
2) Place cucumbers, garlic and dill in a large bowl. Toss to combine. Pour brine over all and turn to coat cucumbers. Cover them with a plate to weigh them down and keep them covered in brine. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, stirring once or twice. Transfer to an airtight container and store for up to two weeks. Yield: 1 quart.

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