Preserve Summer with Housemade Dill Picklesby Michael Wards
Just because summer is over, doesn’t mean it should become a distant memory. In The Austin Artisan kitchen, we preserve the season’s bounty, so we can enjoy it all year long. In fact, we’ve developed a “Pickling Program” to ensure all of our farmer’s market favorites will last throughout the colder months. One of our best recipes? Housemade Dill Pickles!
Pickles are perfect on sandwiches and burgers, but any type of pickled veggie can add elegance to ordinary meals and platters. We’re in the process of preserving cucumbers, Fresno peppers and jalapenos to upgrade our Holiday Catering Orders. Here’s how we do it…
Elevate Your Platters with Pickles:
- Arrange them on cheeseboards. This gives an ordinary appetizer a whole new look.
- Use them to create a beautiful ploughman’s lunch for overnight guests with cheese, cherry jam, sliced meat, hardboiled eggs and fresh bread.
- Add to antipasto platters along with mozzarella balls, olives, artichokes and Italian meat.
The process is easier than you think. Get stared with our simple pickle recipe!
Housemade Dill Pickles
All It Takes
35-40 small to medium pickling cucumbers
4 fresh dill heads or 4 Tbsp. dried dill seed (not weed)
4 garlic cloves or more to taste
1 gallon cold water
1 cup cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. mixed pickling spices
2/3 cups canning or kosher salt (Do NOT use iodized salt!)
Let’s Get Cooking
- Wash the cucumbers, but do not scrub them. Trim 1/8-inch from the blossom end of each cucumber and slice in half lengthwise or into quarters, depending on how large they are and how big you want them to be when they’re done.
- In a gallon jar (or large, wide-mouth, food-safe container) layer the dill heads or seed, garlic cloves and sliced cucumbers.
- In a separate pitcher or bowl, stir the remaining ingredients until the salt is dissolved.
- Pour the brine over the cucumbers, so they are fully submerged. If needed, place a plate, mug or other non-reactive heavy item on the cucumbers to weigh them down and keep them under the brine.
- Cover lightly with a lid, so it’s just perched on top. Or, secure a piece of cheesecloth over the jar with a rubber band to keep fruit flies away.
- Leave on the counter, away from direct sunlight, for 2-4* days or until the cucumbers taste like pickles throughout.
- Fix the lid onto your jar or container and chill. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 6 months if you keep the pickles covered with brine.
*Chef’s Note: If at any point “fuzz” or “foam” develops on top of the brine, use a spoon to remove it. If there is “fuzz” attached to any of the cucumbers, discard the ones that are affected and be sure the others are fully submerged.
Place Your Holiday Catering Order Today! This year, The Austin Artisans are offering customizable Thanksgiving menus to take the stress out of cooking. Enjoy a feast, featuring all of your holiday favorites, delivered right to your door. We’re booking up fast, so contact us to place your order.