elusive dill pickle

I glance at the cucumber vines out of the corner of my eye every time I’m in the garden. I’m afraid that they’ll suddenly be consumed by whatever fungus has attacked their lower leaves since early June. But they’re still there.

Since I don’t know how long I’ve got with my cuke vines, I decided to try yet another batch of ‘fresh’ dills. Actually half-sour deli dills. They’re meant for refrigerating rather than preserving in canning jars.

So after coming across another half sour dill recipe, one that called for putting them straight into the fridge rather than sitting them on the counter for a few days, I decided to give that a try.

I grabbed supplies…

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cut up the cucumbers and garlic…

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… and I always put a grape leaf in the jar, whether the pickles are fresh or canned. They contain tannins that keep pickles crisp. It absolutely works.

I packed the cukes into a container with the dill, garlic, spices and salt water. You have to weigh down the cukes so they’re under the brine. I cover mine with cheesecloth to keep flying creatures out. With previous recipes, I let the jars sit on the counter for three or four or 10 or 20 days, depending on how radical I felt. After that they went into the fridge till they were gone or got pitched.

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I tried so many pickle recipes last year that my head was spinning. I determined that I only sort-of like fully fermented pickles, the kind with long fermentation times. They have a very unique taste, really complex, that no one else in my family cares for.

But I’m looking for a different, very specific taste; fresher, like the dill slices that come in wax paper when you order a Reuben at the deli.

We’ll see.

I’d post the recipe, but I forgot to note where I grabbed it, and don’t want to poach anything. If you’re interested, just Google ‘half sour dill pickle recipe’.

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