I was thinking the other day about the delicious refrigerator pickles I made last summer when cucumbers were abundant, and feeling sad that I would have to wait many more months before tasting them again. Then I realized – why wait, when I have a bag full of locally-grown beets in the fridge right now. I mean, pickled beets, right? I figured I could use the same recipe for pickling the beets as I used for the cucumbers. So I did, and they came out great.
Cucumbers or beets, these pickles make delicious snacks, add sparkle to sandwiches, taste great on cheese and crackers, are delicious however you eat them. You can use the leftover brine for salad dressing, as part or all of the liquid in a bread recipe, or for livening up soups and stews.
- 1 lb cucumbers or beets
- 1 small onion
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup water (you can use the cooking water from the beets)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon each mustard seed, peppercorns, ground turmeric
Slice the vegetables. If using beets, peel them first and steam the slices until tender, about 15 minutes. Pack the vegetables into two clean pint jars. Make the brine by combining the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, and spices in a saucepan over medium heat. Let simmer, while stirring, until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Pour the brine over the vegetables in the jars. Put on the lids, let the jars cool, then put in the refrigerator. Wait 24 hours before eating. These should last about a month in the refrigerator, unless you eat them before then, which you probably will.