It's cucumber season again, and if like us you have so many that you don't know what to do with them, then this recipe is for you! Cold pickling is quick¬ and easy, and uses salt to draw out the excess moisture. This recipe, from guest chef Kevin Hague, works best with small¬ gherkin cucumbers, but you can use any type provided that¬ they are not too big. ¬
- 500g small pickling cucumbers
- 125g sea salt
- 4 small peeled¬† shallots, peeled and quartered
- 2 peeled garlic cloves, and sliced lengthways
- 2-3 dried chillies (optional)
- 2-3 cloves
- ¬ľ¬†tsp coriander seeds
- ¬ľ¬†tsp black peppercorns
- 2 sprigs of fresh dill or tarragon
- 750ml white vinegar
- Remove any stalks and dried flowers from the ends.
- Wash the cucumber skins and rub with a cloth to remove the fine fibres on the skin.
- If the length of your cucumbers will fit into your jars whole¬† then just cut them into quarters lengthways. Otherwise cut them onto 5mm slices.
- Next put a layer of salt in a bowl, add a layer of cucumbers, and then another layer of salt, and repeat until all the cucumber is used up. Finish with a layer of salt, cover the bowl and leave at room temperature for 24 hours.
- Wash the cucumbers to remove the salt and pack into clean sterilised jars, adding¬† shallots, garlic, herbs and spices as you do this. Leave about 1cm of space at the top.
- Now fill the jars with vinegar to completely cover the cucumbers.
- Seal the jars with vinegar-proof lids, and leave to mature for 3-4 weeks in a cool dark place.
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