Easy express pickles to add some color to your party spread

World Best Bar

Jul 06, 2020

Easy express pickles to add some color to your party spread
We love the crunch and bright taste of pickles, especially in the summer. And nothing beats the homemade kind: you get to pick your own veggies, herbs and spices, with the added bonus of impressing all your friends.

But if you start now, it will take weeks before they’re done, right? Wrong! With this method, you could have some ready as early as tomorrow. 

First, you need to choose your vegetables, the fresher and more colorful the better. Carrot, cucumber, cauliflower are a few classics, but you can also go for green veggies like string beans or asparagus if that tickles your fancy! Just blanch them by putting them in boiling water for a couple of minutes before plunging them in an ice cold bath: this will set their color to a nice bright green.

For your brine, you’ll need a 2 to 1 ratio of water and vinegar, plus salt and sugar. For the vinegar, you can go for apple cider, white wine or rice vinegar, just avoid more overpowering vinegars such red wine, sherry, balsamic or malt. You can then season this base to your taste: the flavor of the pickles comes from the combination of spices and herbs added to the brine. For cucumber pickles, fresh garlic, dill and red pepper flakes work really nicely. And if you need some inspiration, these seasonings are guaranteed to work all the time:

Fresh or dried herbs: oregano, thyme, rosemary, dill, etc.

Spices: musard seeds, coriander seeds, red pepper flakes, black or pink peppercorn, fresh or dried ginger

And of course, fresh garlic cloves. Mince for a stronger kick, smash for a more diffused taste. 

Here’s our recipe for carrot pickles. You can change it to any other vegetable or combo, and switch up the seasoning to your liking. 

  • Sterilize your jar and leave it to dry on a kitchen towel 
  • Peel 3 medium-sized carrots, cut them in half and slice them into sticks
  • In a saucepan, pour 1/2 cup of water and 1/4 cup of vinegar. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 tablespoons of sugar and stir until dissolved
  • Bring to a full boil for a couple of minutes, then remove from heat and leave to cool for a bit – you don’t want your veggies to cook
  • Place your carrot sticks in your jar with 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds, 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes, 1/2 teaspoon of cumin, and some fresh rosemary and/or thyme. Add garlic to taste. Feel free to play around with the seasoning or adapt it to what you have in your pantry
  • Pour over your brine until the carrots are completely covered
  • Close the jar tightly and give it a shake 
  • Leave to cool at room temperature, then refrigerate until cold

Your pickles will be ready in as early as a few hours to a day, but the longer you wait, the more flavorful they will be. We find 3 days to be a nice sweet spot. Stored in the fridge, they will keep for 2 to 4 weeks.

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