Saturday, July 3, 2010

Sweet Pickles In 15 Minutes...Just in Time For The 4th of July.

     It's been busy here in Sonoma getting ready for our  annual 4th of July barbecue. In planning our menu this year, we decided to go for the traditional American organic beef burgers with all the fixings, two kinds of coleslaw, James Beards' sour cream slaw,  a tart Indian cabbage dish, an Indian style potato salad, mixed wild greens salad, and for dessert shortcakes.
    So this afternoon it was check and double check as I went over my supplies for the big day. Every summer I pickle everything I can get my mitts on from cucumbers to cherries, but in going through my larder, I noticed that I was running low on sweet pickles. The little cucumbers that I like to use for this recipe have been scarce around here as we had a late spring, and only now have gotten into really warm weather. But I found them today at the little Greek guys' place down the road. I quickly snapped them up and set out to make my 15 minute sweet pickles.
    I first ran across these fast pickles trolling the internet looking for what else..fast pickles. They're attributed to someone named Linda and that's all I know about the origins. I made a few adjustments to my taste and they've become a favorite at our house. This recipe uses something that I rarely use in my kitchen and that's the microwave. The cooking time is only about 7 or 8 minutes so counting prep, this is truly a 15 minute pickle.


Microwave Sweet Pickles



     Here's how you do it.
       Gather some small cucumbers. Wash them and slice them in medium sized rounds. You don't want them too thin or too thick.
       Place them in a microwave safe bowl along with
       1 cup of white distilled vinegar
       1/2 cup of white sugar
       1/2 tsp of celery seed
        1/2 tsp of turmeric
        1 tsp of brown mustard seed
       2 tsp of kosher salt
       1 thinly sliced onion
  Put it in the microwave, set it on high.
 Cook it for 4 minutes, then give it a stir.
   Cook it for another 3 minutes.
Place the pickles in sterile jars, seal them and bob's your uncle! You've got sweet pickles in 15 minutes!
If you don't have canning jars, no problem. Just place the pickles in any clean container and put them in the fridge to chill. You'll never buy store bought pickles again!
  Happy 4th of July to everybody, and good eating this weekend!

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