A few weeks ago I was at a local shop in my neighborhood, picking up some Brooklyn-made snacks for a gift. I grabbed a couple of jars of McClure’s pickles. Little did I know I was about to try the best dill pickles I’d ever had! I knew immediately that I was going to have to try to recreate them.
Pickles are awesome, in my opinion. They are a great snack when you’re craving something salty but don’t want to reach for a bag of chips. Snooki agrees.
Pickles that are made from fresh, local cucumbers are so much tastier than the conventional dill pickles you’d usually find at the store. If you don’t believe me, try it for yourself!! It makes a big difference, and it’s really easy (and fun).
I had a pickle-making party at my apartment and we made a bunch of jars. When it comes to using fresh dill, I found flowered dill and regular dill leaves at the farmer’s market. Since I had seen both kinds in the McClure’s pickle jars, I decided to add a little bit of both into my pickles. I learned that the flowered dill has a stronger dill flavor. You can use either kind!
Ingredients: This will be enough to make about 4 or 5 1-quart jars of pickles. Cut the recipe down if you want to make less.
- 8 Kirby cucumbers (the fat cukes, pictured above. about 2 cucumbers per jar)
- Canning jars (we used quart-sized)
- 5 cups white vinegar (you can also use apple cider vinegar)
- 6 cups water
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- Fresh dill (with or without flowers) – about 1/2 cup dill per jar
- 3-4 cloves of garlic per jar, cut into halves
- Optional additional ingredients to add: chopped onion, red pepper flakes (if you want spicy pickles), or whatever pickle-flavor your heart desires. Be creative!
Heat the water, vinegar and salt in a pot just to a simmer on the stove. Mix well until salt has dissolved in the liquid.
While you’re waiting for the brine to heat up, put your ingredients in the jar. Start by adding the garlic, dill and other optional ingredients to the bottom of the jar.
Slice your cucumber and put the slices in the jars on top of the garlic, dill and other flavor ingredients.
Remove the water/vinegar/salt mixture from the heat and pour over cucumbers. Cover cucumbers completely and leave about 1/4 inch of space at the top of the jar. Put the lid on.
Let them cool to room temperature, and then put them in the refrigerator! Give them about a week minimum before you eat them. You can wait longer, too, for stronger flavors. Ours have been in there for a few weeks now, and the flavor is amazing (and they are still crispy)!
These pickles are DELICIOUS! My favorite is the spicy jar I made with red pepper flakes, black pepper, garlic and dill.