An Addictively Delicious Kosher Dill Pickle Recipe (And they’re SUPER easy to make too!)
When the weather here in Hong Kong is in the 15C-18C range (59F – 65F), I get the itch to start pickling and fermenting things! And while I’m usually torn between my grandparent’s age old kosher dill pickle recipe and my kimchi recipe (we only have so much fridge space), these addictively delicious and satisfyingly crispy dill pickles seem to win out more often than not. I’m guessing in a Korean household, the score might be a little bit different!
As an aside, you can make this kosher dill pickle recipe any time of year, it’s just a little more difficult to control the fermentation in the warmer/summer months.
Keep It Simple With This Kosher Dill Pickle Recipe
This recipe is SUPER easy to make. The only “specialized” pieces of gear you’ll need is a food scale, or some other way to weigh out salt as well as jar that is big enough to satisfy your level of pickle-love. We need a rather large jar, as we go though these things like they’re water.
Fermented foods have massive health benefits. I’m just going to scratch the surface of them here, but suffice it to say, these kosher dills are not only delicious, but they are also a GREAT source of probiotics.
“If you’re consuming a diet rich in fermented foods, you’re essentially bathing your GI tract in healthy, food-related organisms,” says food scientist Robert Hutkins, PhD, a professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln whose lab focuses on the link between fermented foods and human health.
An estimated 100 trillion microorganisms make a home in your gut, and they play a big, though not yet fully understood, role in your health. They influence metabolism and the immune system, and they may be involved in the development of colorectal cancer, obesity, and diabetes.” (Source linked below.
Have a look here if you want to know more about the health benefits of fermented foods.
Pictures of the Process
(The recipe card is below the pictures)
When you see these bubbles, it’s time to put them in the fridge! (If you’re watching the video clip on a computer, to see the bubbles, make sure you view it in full screen.)
Try this out yourself, and in the comment section below, let us know how they turned out! If you’re keen to check out some of our other recipes, have a look at our cooking section, and I’m sure you’ll find plenty of other delicious recipes to peruse!
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- Cucumbers (Any variety is fine, but the less seeds the better. Any amount is fine, just make sure they can fit in your jar.)
- Garlic (3-4 cloves, crushed)
- Pickling Spice (1.5 tbsp)
- Salt (amount will depend on how much water you use, but 220g/8oz should be plenty)
- Chilis (any variety is fine, choose one based on your spice preference)
- Dill (3-4 sprigs)
- Boiling water (1/4L / 1 cups)
- Cold water (3/4 L / 1 cups)
- 2 tablespoons black peppercorns
- 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
- 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoons dill seed
- 2 tablespoons allspice berries
- 1 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
- 10-12 bay leaves, crumbled
The pictures above correspond to the directions here! So have a look if you like visuals! We certainly do!
Preparing the Pickling Spice
In any container you'd like, combine the following: (If you don't have all of these, or you don't want to include all of these, that's fine! As long as you have most of them, the pickles will taste just fine!)
2 tablespoons black peppercorns
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
2 tablespoons coriander seeds
2 tablespoons dill seed
2 tablespoons allspice berries
1 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
10-12 bay leaves, crumbled
Preparing the Salt Brine
Waiting for a brine to cool is a pain in the butt. So, you're going to boil a little bit of water, dissolve the salt in the boiling water, and then you are going to add in the remaining cool water which will both dilute the brine to the correct percentage and also cool it down.
You are going to want to make a 5% salt solution by weight. More simply put, for every 1 liter (4 cups) of water you are going to add 50g (2oz) of salt.
For this recipe, bring 250ml (1 cup) of water to a boil, and then turn off the heat. Then, dissolve in 50g (2oz) of salt. Stir this solution until the salt dissolves. Then, add in the remaining 750ml (3 cups) of cold water.
Set this salty brine aside for later.
Preparing the Jars and Cucumbers
1. With the rough side of a sponge, scrub your cucumbers, making sure all the little prickly spines are removed. It's okay if you are quite abrasive with the cucumbers and if they look a little bit scuffed up after this process.
2. Cut off a tiny bit of both the flowering end and the vine end of the cucumber.
3. Rinse the cucumbers to remove any residue from the scrubbing and cutting process. Set the cucumbers aside.
4. Rinse a large jar. (Make sure the jar is large enough for the amount of pickles you'd like to make.)
5. Into the jar, put 1.5 tbsp of pickling spice, chili (as much as you'd like), 3-4 cloves of crushed garlic as well as the 3-4 sprigs of dill.
6. Cut your cucumbers to a hight and size suitable for your jar. We like to do whole and halves, but any shape/size will work.
7. Pack the cucumbers into the jar. And pack them tightly. When you pour in the brine, you don't want the cucumbers to float, so again, pack them in tightly. And, don't worry if you crush down the dill. It's all gonna work out in the end!
8. Place the jar on a plate, and move the entire thing to an area where it's NOT in direct sunlight and where it can remain undisturbed for 24-36 hours. Then, pour in the brine until the jar is completely full.
9. On top of the jar, set a plate or bowl to make an "air tight seal." A little bit of the brine from the completely full jar should spill over on to the plate. (The seal won't be completely air tight, but you simply want something covering the top of the jar.)
10. Then, carefully dry the liquid that spilled down onto the plate.
11. Let the pickles sit out for 24-36 hours. When you see small bubbles rising up to the surface, when you see the liquid has become quite cloudy, and when you see some liquid has bubbled over onto the plate, they're done!
12. Close the jar, not too tightly though, and store them in your fridge. You can eat them right away at this point, but they won't reach the peak of their flavor until 7-10 days later. So, if you can restrain yourself, the more mature flavor is well worth waiting for! These will last in the fridge for many months, if you can, again, restrain yourself from eating them 😉