Marc's Simple Sour Pickles (Inspired by Sando Katz)
In summer cukes are most abundant but any time of year you can make sour pickles. Basically transforming a cuke into a pickle means fermentation. That means things do go wrong. Just try and see what happens. Then try again...and again! Also it is fun to experiment. Add some hot peppers or cauliflower. Maybe a little less salt.
- A large glass or ceramic bowl - A plate that you will put on top of the pickles and brine - A weight to hold the plate down so the pickles stay in the brine - A dish towel that you'll put over the bowl - A few pounds of unwaxed cucumbers - A half cup of sea salt & half-gallon water - A bunch or two of fresh dill or a couple Tbs. dried and/or 1 Tbs. seeds - In summer also add a few heads of flowering dill and a couple fresh grape leaves if you can - A half-dozen or so black peppercorns - A handful of peeled garlic cloves. You can put in a lot more than that if you like pikled garlic.
The steps are:
1. Make your brine by stirring your sea salt into the half gallon of water 2. Rinse the cukes and let them sit in water for an hour 3. Dump everything in the bowl 4. Pour in the brine and put the plate on top of the floating pickles 5. Put the weight on the plate to keep the pickles in the brine 6. Put the dish towel over the top of the bowl 7. Tuck the jar away in a cool spot 8. After a couple days you'll notice the water getting cloudy and maybe a little bubbling. Don't worry. Take off the towel, weight and plate. If there is any mold on top of the brine just skim it off and wash the plate. Taste one of your pickles and decide if you want them more sour. If so then just put the plate, weight and towel back on and check it again every day or two. Keep repeating this process till the pickles are sour enough. 9. When they are ready place the pickles in jar and store in your fridge.
Below are pictures to give you a sense of what things should look like.
I first discovered seviche in Barcelona about 25 years ago. It was my first time in a tapas bar. I think I tasted about twenty different things. Two things stood out. The seviche and a bowl of salty, just fried padron peppers. Today I find myself craving seviche as much as I do sushi. That's saying a lot.
And while on the topic of Spain, after you've had a chance to watch the video below you can check out some of my other foodie exploits in Spain. Enjoy!
Episode 86 gave you a few super simple ways to deal with tomatoes. No recipes, no fuss, no muss, fool-proof ideas that take less than 5 minutes of prep and virtually no ingredients beyond the tomatoes themselves.
Episode 87 gives you some tips on how to your hands on tons of tomatoes.
This is the time of year when I transform box after box of old shitty tomatoes into yummy stuff. In Episode 86 I shared with you how to deal with the tomato influx even if you don't seek out box after box like I do.
In this episode I offer you a few tips on how to get very cheap tomatoes. Next week in episode 88 I'll share with you how to make tomato ketchup, BBQ sauce and confit.
Wild Flavors follows the seasons showcasing the wonderful creations of Didi Emmons. She emphasizes unique garden plants like African basil and wild edibles like autumn olive & Japanese knotweed. Didi shares useful overviews of 46 plants in addition to prep and preserving tips as well as recipes. It's a must for your culinary library collection.