Dill Pickled Cucumbers – a delicious store cupboard staple!
These Bread and Butter Dill Pickled Cucumbers are the result of a visit this morning to the Adelaide Central Market. I came upon some locally grown, freshly picked, young Lebanese cucumbers and I knew immediately how I would like to use them.
I like to always have a jar of these pickles on hand.
A balanced mix of vinegar, sugar, spices and dill produces a mild, slightly sweet pickle. I like to use the pickles on hamburgers and bread and cheese. I love the zing the pickles add to almost any sandwich.
This simple pickle is easily made, and a great way to start if you’re new to the pickle making process. I have a few tips to ensure success. Cucumbers contain approximately 95% water and all that water can dilute your pickling solution. To overcome this I like to use small cucumbers as their water content is a little lower and the skin more tender. I also soak them in a salt and water brine for 3 hours, before pickling, to draw out some of their moisture.
It is essential to use a non-reactive bowl and saucepan.
This means using plastic, ceramic, glass, enamel or stainless steel products. A reactive pan is one that contains metals that might interact with acidic foods, altering the colour and flavour. Aluminium, cast iron, and unlined copper are examples of reactive metals.
First of all, I suggest that you look out for bargain boxes of ‘seconds’ cucumbers at farmers’ markets as often the only difference is that they’re unevenly sized and not straight! These cucumbers are perfect for this recipe.
Do try these simple pickles, and please comment below if you do. There’s only one problem with these pickles – they keep disappearing!
Xx Alex and Faye
P.S. These make a great gift! If you are looking for another edible gift idea, check out my Balsamic Glaze!
Dill Pickled Cucumbers
These easily prepared pickles have the perfect flavour balance of sweet and tangy, accented by fresh dill. They are extremely versatile, adding a little zing to many dishes.
- 450 g Lebanese cucumbers young and fresh
- 1 1/2 tbsp course salt *
- 1 large onion * very thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup boiling water freshly boiled
- 1 cup white wine vinegar *
- 1 cup white sugar
- 2 tspn mustard seeds
- 2 tspn fresh dill chopped
- 1/4 tspn turmeric ground
- 1/4 tspn dried chilli flakes
Trim the ends off the cucumbers and discard. Slice the cucumbers thinly, about the thickness of a coin. I slice mine by hand but you can use a food processor or mandoline.
Mix the cucumber and onion in a non-reactive* bowl.
Mix the salt with the boiling water. Some of the salt will dissolve, but not all of it.
Pour the salt and water over the cucumber mixture, mix to distribute and leave for 3 hours, turning the mixture occasionally.
Tip the cucumber and onion into a colander and press the mixture down with the back of a large spoon to remove as much liquid as possible.
For the pickling liquid, mix all the ingredients in a non-reactive medium-sized saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer over a medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
Tip the cucumber and onion into the pickling liquid and simmer 2 minutes. Stir several times.
Remove from the heat and leave the mixture to cool in the saucepan.
Spoon the mixture into sterilised jars*, ensuring the mixture is covered with pickling liquid. Do not overfill the jars as the liquid should not touch the lids.
Once a jar is opened, store it in the refrigerator.
*See the notes regarding a non-reactive bowl and saucepan in the main notes above.
*I have also used young zucchini to make this pickle.
*The onion weight is roughly 200gm.
*The tablespoon is 20ml size.
*To produce the best-flavoured pickle it is important to use good quality vinegar
*To sterilise jars, heat the oven to 130C/ 270F, place the jars and metal lids on the racks and leave them for 20 minutes.