If y’all remember, I have written several posts in the past about home canning. There was the Strawberry Jam. Then the Kosher Dills and the Pickled Okra. And don’t forget that delicious Basic Salsa, either! All tried and true great recipes.
But, you know what? Sometimes I just don’t have enough produce on hand to do a big batch of canning. Sometimes it’s just a handful of whatever I picked from the garden that day. Two or three cucumbers, a handful of cherry tomatoes and maybe a pepper or two. More than I need for dinner and I absolutely hate to waste home grown produce! So what do I do with that little bit of fresh veggie deliciousness? I make up a quick batch of refrigerator pickles.
Now, I want you to know that this is not a canning recipe. You don’t need to start sterilizing jars and get out your big canner and fill it up. This is just a simple pickle that you store in the fridge and use up within a few days. What could be easier, huh?
To get started, you’ll need a pretty jar to hold your pickles. Or an old used mayonnaise jar. Whatever. I won’t tell. Just make sure it’s very clean and the top fits well.
Put your salt, peppercorns, dill seed, fresh dill and half the sliced garlic in the bottom of the jar. If you don’t have fresh dill, that’s okay. It’s really more for looks anyway.
Then simply layer your veggies in the jar in an attractive way. Or just throw them in there any old way. Whatever makes you happy. In this jar I used cucumbers, Vidalia onions, halved yellow cherry tomatoes and a few small sweet peppers. But you don’t have to use my combination! Just substitute whatever you have on hand that you think might taste good pickled.
Bring the vinegar and water to a strong simmer, nearly a boil, in a small pan. Pour the simmering mixture over the veggies and put on the lid. Let your pickles cool before you store them in the refrigerator. Use them up within a few days.
That’s it. Really. That’s all there is to making pickles. But now you should understand that these will not taste like a store-bought or canned pickle. They will have much more of a fresh taste and some say it’s more or less an acquired taste at that. All I know is that we love them. They’re so good with all the fresh summer veggies – fried okra, field peas, sliced tomatoes, sauteed yellow squash. Gee, I’m making myself hungry!
Just one more thing – if you and your folks don’t care much for dill, try these with thyme instead. Different and very interesting flavor.
Fresh veggies pickled with dill and garlic
- 1 ½ tsp. salt
- 8 peppercorns
- 1 ½ tsp. dill seed
- Fresh dill
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
- Assorted fresh veggies – cucumber, sweet or hot peppers, cherry tomatoes, onion
- 1 ½ cups white vinegar
- 1 ½ cups water
- Place the salt, peppercorns, dill seed, fresh dill and half the sliced garlic in the bottom of a clean jar.
- Layer the veggies in an attractive arrangement.
- Combine the vinegar and water in a pan and bring just barely to a boil.
- Pour the vinegar and water over the veggies.
- Close the jar and leave it to cool.
- When cool, store in the refrigerator.