I’m not kidding when I tell you I just made the BEST pickles I have EVER tasted.
I’m still a little in shock, and wanted to share.
With the bounty that is a CSA, it’s useful to get crafty about how to make the most of the food. Last year, I discovered the pickling miracle that is Dan Koshansky’s recipe (all thanks to Margaret Roach–thanks Margaret!).
A few notes of import:
*I used zucchini. We’ve got lots of it and while my favorite recipe for zucchini is from Heidi Swanson’s Special Zucchini Bread, I was on the prowl for another. Last year we made cucumber pickles according to Dan’s recipe above and quickly became big fans. “Surely it will work with zucchini”, I thought. I had no idea just how amazing these little buggers would turn out!
*I started these pickles on Wednesday, let them sit on the counter until Saturday morning when I packed the tops of the jars with elephant garlic and fennel whisps, put them in the fridge and tried them about 7 hours later. Between Marshall and I, we polished off a pint ‘o pickles in about 30 seconds. (FYI, a little fuzz was forming at the surface of the pickles from sitting out, as an avid fermenter this bothers me not! I just shoved the spears under the liquid, packed with more herbs, put the top on, and placed the jars in the fridge.)
*I didn’t have pickling spice. Knowing it’s home-makeable, I enlisted the help of our friend Google and found I didn’t have the exact ingredients to follow any one recipe. So, I used what I had and what seemed like would be tasty which was (amounts are entirely up to you): peppercorn, juniper berries, allspice berries, ground ginger, turmeric, cumin, lemongrass, caraway seeds, bay leaves, cloves and crushed red pepper. This pickling spice will go down in my personal cookbook history. I want to pickle everything.
Now I’ve got pickled fennel on the brain, as well as fennel ice cream . . . more to come!