Bread and Butter Cucumber Pickles

So, last year I gave you the recipe for a wonderful tomato salad that even if the tomatoes were not too good the salad would still taste Devine. 

And the reason for that would be the great Romesco sauce. Today we are adding one more layer of complexity if you want to build the best "horiatiki" Greek salad.. Which is a tomato salad with cucumber, olives and feta cheese. 

But we will treating the cucumbers a bit differently this time... We will be turning them into a pickle and in that way we can use them in our sandwiches or plain with some ouzo and in general to make something different and tasty.

We will put the cucumbers in jars and after sterilization we can keep them in a dark cupboard for up to a year (even though after six months they will not be as crispy).

This particular pickle is not fermented so we do not have to wait some time to eat them. Also it is a great way to keep this vegetable for some time especially if we grow them and we have a large production.

It is true though that pickles have sort of vanished from the market... I mean I remember that my relatives used to make some in the village in Evia but do not see that happening very much anymore. But also you cannot seem to be able to find good pickles in the shops either.

I believe though that we must return to them. And the reasons are:

a) Seasonal produce usually has less amount of pesticides and herbicides and in general it is less polluted. So, buying tomatoes in the winter time is bad as they will tend to be of not as good quality.

b) seasonal produce is tastier. A summer tomato or a summer cucumber will be tastier than a winter one. 

c) Seasonal produce is cheaper. 

d) pickles esp. the fermented ones are giving us wonderful gut friendly bacteria and that is great for our well being. 

So... give this pickle a try and maybe it will drive you to try and make some more.. I will be making a lot more for sure! 

 

 

 

Diffuculty: 1 of 3
Duration:30 minutes prep, 2 hours wait and 20 minutes cooking
Serves:3 medium jars

Ingredients

2 kilos of cucumbers (small ones esp)

2-3 tblsp of coarse salt

 

1 medium onion cut in slices

spices that we like

Some suggestions would be:

mustard seeds

coriander seeds

fennel seeds

peppercorns 

 

 

1 kilo of apple vinegar

230 g of sugar

1/2 tsp. dried tumeric

500 g of water

 

Method

Slice cucumbers thinly either with a mandolin or sharp knife and place them in a big bowl.

Add the salt, mix it all up and let it for 2-3 hours for the excess water to be drawn out by salt. 

Drain them and add in a clean bowl.

Add the onion slices and the spices and mix them all up.

Transfer them into the jars.

Meanwhile prepare the brine. 

In a pot add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a simmer till the sugar melts.

Very carefully as the mixture is very hot fill the jars up with the brine. (you may have some left depending on the jar's size).

Close the lid and put the the jars in a pot that you have lined the bottom with a tea towel. 

Add enough water to come 2/3rds up the sides of the jars. Water must be hot so that the jars will not break.

Let them simmer for 10 minutes. remove from the water bath, let the jars cool off and store them in a dry and dark place. 

 

You can omit the sterilizing process but then you will have to keep the pickles in the fridge

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