How Not to Make Pickles
Turns out Lulu doesn’t like cucumbers.
I mean, really, really doesn’t like cucumbers. This, the very same girl that writes love songs about pickles.
We were at a friend’s for dinner last week and I put a few sliced cucumbers on her plate. She put one in her mouth and yet it quickly reappeared with the loud announcement, “I hate cucumbers!”
After a quick hushed talk about being gracious guests, I gladly ate the remaining cucumbers on her plate, save for the one that she’d made into mouth gazpacho. Instantly, I was taken back to my childhood.
My grandpa’s cucumber patch produced all summer long and never seemed to let up. My grandma’s solution for the never ending supply was to keep a large bowl on her sink filled with a tangy vinegar marinade and freshly sliced cucumbers.
We’d all grab a few slices out of the marinade every time we’d walk through the kitchen and she’d simply grab her paring knife and start slicing more to drop into the waiting bowl. She didn’t get to sit down much.
I have a lot of cucumbers this summer.
And I’ve started my own bowl by the sink.
- 1/2 c. vinegar (any vinegar will work, though I prefer apple cider or red wine vinegar)
- 1/4-1/2 c. cold water
- 2 T. sucanat or stevia
- 1/2 t. salt
- 2 t. dried dill or 2 T. fresh dill, chopped
- 2 very large or 4 medium cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 T. thinly sliced red onion (optional)
Combine vinegar, water, sweetener, salt and dill in a large bowl. Mix until sweetener has fully dissolved.
Add sliced cucumbers and onion. (Note: I like to peel the cucumbers using a vegetable peeler and leaving thin strips of green skin in tact. It’s pretty.)
The longer you allow the cucumbers to marinate, the more flavor they will take on. You can refrigerate until serving (but my grandma never did).
You’d think these “pickled” cucumbers would have won Lulu over.
She walked through the kitchen, grabbed a marinated cucumber slice and headed for the flowerbed.
She scooped up her father’s carefully laid and spread mulch…
and dumped it into the yard.
She heard the click of the camera and quickly turned to warn me, “Don’t show Dad these pictures.”
“But what are you doing, Lu?” I asked.
She dropped her cucumber in the dirt and stated matter-of-factly, “Growing pickles.”
And with that, she scooped the mulch back out of the yard and carefully laid and spread it back in the flowerbed.
Humming a pickle love song all the while.