What’s the Dill With Pickle Juice in a Cocktail?

By    –   Orange Coast Magazine

Dill-Iciously Spring at Five Crowns

My uncle once told me about his award-winning family-secret margarita recipe. “Just add a little bit of pickle juice and you’ll blow everyone’s minds!” he would say. The thought of citrus, tequila, and pickle juice may seem like an odd combination on paper, but it actually shores up a nice sea-like brininess, enhancing the citrus and agave, bringing the whole drink to a weirdly higher level. But craft cocktails that use pickle juice or dill, I hadn’t seen one until recently and thought this must be some sort of 2018 cocktail trend.

At 320 Main in Seal Beach, co-owner Jason Schiffer just gave me a flashback with his latest drink menu featuring a new whiskey sour called the Dilbert Pickle which contains George Dickel rye, whiskey pickle shrub, Lustau Sherry, lemon juice, and egg white. Why it isn’t called the Dickel Pickle is beyond me, but the drink, served in a tall champagne flute, trumpets fresh oak aromatics through the dense meringue-like head. As if foam that smells of fresh bourbon-soaked oak isn’t goosebump-inducing enough, the finish has a tingle of dill pickle that hits the back of the throat. “Pickles are funny, that’s why I did it,” says Jason. “I like to go around and throw pickles, and put pickles in front of peoples doors, just because it’s funny.” 320 Main, Seal Beach // 320MainSealBeach.com

Several miles south from 320 Main is Corona Del Mar’s landmark restaurant the Five Crowns, and a different kind of dill cocktail hit my paws. “This is Dill-Iciously Spring.” “Well, I should hope so!” I said, not expecting dill puns from such an institution. Dill-iciously Spring, is a gin drink made with Velvet Falernum, elderflower liquor, lime juice, dill, and muddled cucumber. The drink is full bodied, herbaceous, with a kick of that refreshing pre-pickle vibe. Catch this drink on the spring menu, which is created around new executive chef Alejandra Padlilla’s incredible cuisine. 3801 CA-1, Corona Del Mar // lawrysonline.com/five-crowns

Selling pickles like wine: Premium consumer products from Bharat

From local spirits like feni to fine garments, our products with a little more flair without being bashful about the price might just help revive traditional cottage industries.

By Sahil Kini   –   livemint.com

Imagine if we repackage the pickles into beautifully tiny ornate glass jars and sell it in a limited run like ‘small-batch’ whiskies, only in premium stores or directly online. Photo: iStockphoto

My grandmother makes a particular lemon pickle that, in our family, is treated like gold. Aged over years, and in one particular bottle’s case, a decade, the pickle turns dark—almost black—and develops a flavour so complex and intense that one taste of it often sends the eater into a gastronomical trance.

It emerges only on really special occasions, like the meal we had after the birth of my son. An aunt once nearly caused a diplomatic incident when she surreptitiously tried to pocket a small chunk in a poorly hidden glass bottle.

One of my mortal fears is that the pickle will be gone once she is. And wondering about ways to ensure I never run out, got me thinking: Could there be a case for a premium pickle brand?

And in the process of exploring this idea, I want to outline three tenets for consumer products that could work particularly well in the Indian market: (1) Select Bharat-specific categories e.g. pickles, feni (2) Build a decidedly premium brand identity across the board: digital presence, premium packaging and a strong narrative of why these products are luxurious (3) Leverage a cooperative model at the back-end to supply authentic products while creating livelihood improvement opportunities.

This is not a new concept. The Indian apparel sector has almost perfected this model. Brands such as Raw Mango and Fabindia tick all three boxes and have met with tremendous success.

In cosmetics, Kama and Forest Essentials have done the same to the concept of luxury Ayurveda (albeit without the cooperative supply model). But as is the case in consumer products, there’s always more money to be made if you create the right niche.

Now is a particularly opportune time for the space as consumer products are the “it” sector for quite a few venture capital funds. Driven by events like the success of the Pratap Snacks IPO (initial public offering) at home, and Unilever’s billion-dollar acquisition of Dollar Shave Club abroad, venture capitalists (VCs) and start-ups alike are now taking a fresh look at the sector. It’s early days yet, but the emergence of consumer products-focused VCs like Fireside Ventures, and start-ups like Raw Pressery, Bombay Shaving Co., and Moms Co. are indicative of a renaissance in the space.

Most of these companies have chosen decidedly Western categories. We live in an age when a 150g box of ground chickpeas sells for Rs200 just because it has “Hummus” plastered on the label. One visit to a luxury supermarket like Foodhall will reveal an avalanche of pretty jars selling Indian-made versions of foreign goods at ultra-premium price points. But by and large, the absence of products that are from Bharat’s hinterland is the first reason I believe there is space for a premium pickle business.

Secondly, there’s the question of building a brand story. The Europeans have mastered this craft. Selling fermented grape juice like it’s the nectar of the gods, or treating coagulated milk protein on par with bank collateral (no really, there’s a bank in Italy that accepts Parmigiano Reggiano cheese as collateral for loans!); there’s so much we can learn about marketing from them. Concepts like a chateau with winemaking heritage, terroir, ageing, applies to our home-made products too. Then why don’t we sell it like we’re proud of it, at a price point that communicates their true value?

Which brings me to the final point. Most consumer product companies employ a full-stack approach geared towards eventual mass manufacturing. Adopting this approach for products like pickle or wine would be a huge mistake. Wine and cheese aren’t mass produced. They’re made in limited supply by chateaus that have mastered the craft over generations. Their scarcity and brand positioning is what accounts for most of their value.

We should apply the same principles to our products. Grocery stores in older neighbourhoods still sell pickles in plastic jars with handwritten labels. These flavour bombs made by women looking to make a little extra money, are as authentic as my grandmother’s creations but sell typically for under Rs50 for 500g. That is a travesty.

Imagine if we repackage the same pickles into beautifully tiny ornate glass jars, put it in a wooden box with the brand name engraved, slip in a scroll with the name and story of the grandma that made it, and sell it in a limited run like “small-batch” whiskies, only in premium stores or directly online. This way, grandma makes all the money she needs, we get to eat some fabulous pickles from around the country and those pickles will finally be priced like the priceless treasures they are.

My pickle obsession notwithstanding, these principles could apply to many Bharat categories. From local spirits like feni, toddy and mahua liquor, to fine garments, to intricate furniture and jewellery, marketing our products with a little more flair and storytelling without being bashful about the price might just help revive traditional cottage industries while giving us an authentic taste of our heritage.

Sahil Kini is a principal with Aspada Investment Advisors. The Bharat Rough Book is a column on building businesses for the middle of India’s income pyramid. His Twitter handle is @sahilkini

The First Annual Vodka and Pickles Festival Gets Creative

Local restaurants present pairings for the festival, held at Grand Prospect Hall on March 18th – tickets on sale now on Brown Paper Tickets.


Vodka and Pickle Pairing
“As a martial artist who grew up in Russia, I know how regarded vodka and pickles are,” said Oleg Taktarov, Russian-born American actor.

Creatively crafted vodka mixed drinks, unlimited pickled dishes, and live entertainment are just a few things guests will find at Grand Prospect Hall on March 18th for the First Annual Vodka and Pickles Festival. Two sessions will run throughout the day (12PM and 3PM). In addition to great food and drinks, the festival will feature fabulous raffles, a funky photo booth and a fundraiser for Palm of Hope Charity.

A variety of vodka mixed drinks will be creatively crafted by participating bars and restaurants for the festival. Each participating bar/restaurant is asked to prepare a small appetizer/finger food of their choice that will pair well with their vodka-based mixed drink, for “The Best Pairing of Vodka drink and Hor’dorve” contest. There will then be a voting period, allowing for every guest to select their favorite.

“As a martial artist who grew up in Russia, I know how regarded vodka and pickles are,” said Oleg Taktarov, Russian-born American actor. “I’m excited for my friends in New York who will attend the festival. I’m sure it will be fun!”

As a National Historical Landmark, Grand Prospect Hall will be a beautiful location for the festival. Brass and marble statues along with original stain glass and murals continue to grace the stunning interiors.

Entertainment for the event will include live performances by a electronic rock, synth-pop band and gypsy trio as well as a DJ to round out the evening. Additionally, there will be a modern art gallery, and a raffle with some amazing prizes including some of the displayed art, photo sessions, massages, and more.

By attending the Vodka and Pickle Festival, guests are also supporting the Palm of Hope charity that works with families with ill children in Eastern European counties.

The limited tickets for the March 18th festivals are available on Brown Paper Tickets online or by phone at 800-838-3006.

A lawyer came to court drunk, the Bar says. That was just the start of his problems.

BY DAVID J. NEAL   –   Miami Herald

A Florida lawyer with the name “Pickles” showed up in court pickled and found himself in a pickle with the Internal Revenue Service over years of unpaid income taxes, the Florida Bar said.

The state Supreme Court also found fault with this behavior, which is why Cocoa lawyer Timothy Pickles began serving a 91-day suspension on Jan. 27. Pickles, a University of Florida law graduate, has been a Florida Bar member since 1995 with a clean record.

According to the formal complaint by the Bar, Pickles represented the Hidden Cove Homeowners Association when he showed up to Brevard County Circuit Court 30 to 45 minutes late for a June 24, 2016, trial continuation. He also came back late from the lunch break.

Lack of promptness proved the lesser of Pickles’ problems.

Pickles “returned late from lunch recess in an impaired state,” the Bar’s formal complaint read. “(Pickles) was lethargic, slow, non-responsive, red-faced, and falling asleep. When (Pickles) stood up, he dropped papers and tripped when trying to walk.”

Judge David Dugan stopped the trial, the complaint said, and had Pickles’ law firm called so someone could come get him. Soon after picking him up that day, his firm dropped him.

In his answer to the formal complaint, filed Oct. 5, 2017, Pickles admitted to drinking before court and during lunch that day, but denied a tardy appearance, the depiction of being drunk or that the court needed to call a ride for him.

But, Pickles did also admit to not paying personal income taxes from 2008 through 2012, an inaction producing an IRS reaction of a tax lien for $155,917.70. That’s separate from the business income taxes for Timothy F. Pickles, P.A., which had a spotty income tax filing record from 2005 through 2014. The IRS went after $118, 414.31 from there.

He did plead guilty to all of it in the No. 15, 2017 consent judgment.

David J. Neal: 305-376-3559@DavidJNeal

Let’s Eat: Scotch eggs were the Naked Egg taco of the 18th century

By Bryna Godar   –   The Cap Times

At The Coopers Tavern they serve a “Sconnie Egg,” featuring house-made brat sausage wrapped around a soft-boiled egg, served with a variety of pickles and a beer and mustard aioli ($7).

Egg wrapped in sausage that’s breaded and deep-fried sounds like a fast-food experiment akin to the Naked Egg Taco, the inside-out Taco Bell invention with a fried egg as the wrap.

In a way, that’s exactly what the Scotch egg is. Food writers dispute the popular snack’s origins, but the upscale English department store Fortnum and Mason claims to have invented Scotch eggs in the 18th century as a portable, ready-to-eat meal for coach travelers.

In other words: fast food.

Scotch eggs are not actually Scottish in origin. Many believe the name stemmed from technique of “scotching,” or tenderizing, the meat.

In U.K. shipyards, these eggs were a working man’s breakfast along with a pint of Scotch ale, according to Peter McElvanna, owner of The Coopers Tavern. In the centuries since, Scotch eggs have become popular pub and picnic fare all over the United Kingdom and beyond.

“I’ve been eating them my whole life,” said McElvanna, who is from Armagh in Northern Ireland.

Scotch eggs can be hard- or soft-boiled eggs wrapped in sausage, coated in breadcrumbs, then baked or fried. They’re typically served sliced in half and accompanied by mustard, pickles or other condiments.

The result is a filling snack or small meal that can be served hot or cold, making Scotch eggs ideal for camping breakfasts, lakeside picnics or late-night beers at a pub.

The basic concept of a Scotch egg allows for ample variation, with some people using quail eggs for smaller serving sizes or opting for different condiments like chili jam. In Madison, a handful of pubs and restaurants offer Scotch eggs with varying types of sausage, sauces and condiments.

At The Coopers Tavern, it’s called the “Sconnie Egg,” featuring house-made bratwurst sausage wrapped around a soft-boiled egg. It’s breaded and fried, then served with a variety of pickles and a beer and mustard aioli ($7).

Sprecher’s Restaurant and Pub also opts for bratwurst, with sauerkraut on the side for a more German take (two eggs, $7.99). Brocach offers a similar riff to Coopers, but with a hard-boiled instead of soft-boiled egg and the addition of stone ground mustard ($5).

My family first encountered Scotch eggs when we lived in Farnborough, England for a year. Fran Griffin introduced us to the dish.

“No matter how many you make, there are never any leftovers,” Griffin told me when I wrote to her on Facebook.

The closest to my family’s Scotch eggs was a version from Flying Hound Alehouse in Fitchburg that uses a coarser ground, spicy Hungarian sausage and a spicy, mildly sweet Dijon style mustard ($5).

Chef Andreas Kammer said the trick to his Scotch eggs is in the breading process. Instead of dropping each coated egg round right in the fryer, he bakes them in the oven before flash-frying.

He said that helps the sausage and egg hold together well and keeps the breading from getting too dark in the oil. The result is a delicious, filling combination, with mild-to-medium heat from the mustard.

Kammer said customers love the Scotch eggs enough that he’s run out a couple times in the past year.

“They’re a high-prep item,” he said. “You have to make a bunch of them at a shot.”

My parents have opted for solely baking their Scotch eggs as an easier and somewhat healthier alternative. We hard boil the eggs and wrap them in mild Italian sausage from Fraboni’s Italian Specialties and Delicatessen on Regent Street, using a generous ratio of about one pound of sausage to six eggs.

Then we roll the balls in store-bought breadcrumbs and bake them at 350 degrees until they’re nicely browned on each side, about 30 to 35 minutes. To make them even crispier, pan fry the egg after baking, turning it to darken each side.

These meaty, satisfying eggs have become a staple of our long hikes, picnics at American Players Theater and neighborhood block parties.

“People do love them,” Kammer said.


Reprinted from Gourmet Traveller

Prok Ribs with Pickles. Photo by BEN DEARNLEY

These pork ribs are marinated and slow-cooked in advance, and the potato salad only improves after a day in the fridge.  All that’s left to do on the day is glaze and heat the ribs.

You’ll need

3 kgAmerican-style pork rib racks125 ml (½ cup)apple cider vinegar, plus extra for brushing60 gmmolasses40 gmDijon mustardWild rocket and sour pickles, to serve Pastrami spice rub2 tbspblack peppercorns2 tbspwhite peppercorns2 tbspyellow mustard seeds2 tbspcoriander seeds3½ tbsp (25gm)smoked paprika1 tspcayenne pepper2 tspbrown sugar Potato salad2 kgchat potatoes, halved100 gmsour cream50 gmmayonnaiseJuice of 1 lemon, or to taste1 tbspapple cider vinegar or a splash of pickling liquid from the pickles½onion, coarsely grated1garlic clove, finely grated½ cupcoarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley


  • 01
  • For pastrami spice rub, crush whole spices and 1 tbsp sea salt with a mortar and pestle, then combine with paprika, cayenne and sugar.
  • 02
  • Brush ribs with a little vinegar, rub all over with spice rub, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight to marinate.
  • 03
  • Preheat oven to 160°C. Divide ribs between 2 large roasting pans and add 125ml water to each. Cover tightly with foil and roast, swapping trays halfway through cooking, until meat is almost falling from the bone (2-2¼ hours). Cool, and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
  • 04
  • For potato salad, cover potatoes well with cold salted water in a large saucepan, bring to the boil and cook until tender (10-15 minutes). Drain and return to pan. Combine remaining ingredients except parsley in a bowl, season to taste and add to potatoes. Toss to coat, then refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature and toss with parsley to serve.
  • 05
  • Preheat oven to 200°C. Combine vinegar, molasses and mustard in a bowl and season to taste. Divide ribs between 2 large oven trays lined with baking paper, brush with mustard mixture and roast until browned and warmed through (10-15 minutes). Cut racks into ribs and serve hot with potato salad, rocket and pickles.

Traditional fermentation at the heart of Japan’s healthy diet

A pickle stall at Nishiki Market in Kyoto.

The practice of fermentation in food can be traced to the very ­beginnings of civilisation when early humans discovered an al­chemy that allowed them to preserve ingredients so they could be eaten year-round. Almost every culture on earth practises fermentation in some way.

But in Japan, fermentation is integral to the food culture, with fermented foods often regarded as the “soul” of Japanese cuisine, and they have been part of the daily diet for centuries.

Beyondtsukemono (pickles, of which there are many types and methods), ingredients like shoyu (soy sauce), miso, umeboshi ­(salted plums), katsuobushi(fermented and smoked skipjack tuna integral to dashi stock), natto(fermented soy beans), sake, mirin, vinegars and amazake are all fermented. Koji (Aspergillus oryzae) is so intrinsic to many of these foods that it has recently been ­declared a national fungus.

Japanese cuisine is often regarded as one of the world’s healthiest, and fermented foods can be credited with playing a significant role in this. Fermented foods (that haven’t been pasteurised) are teeming with probiotics, millions of beneficial bacteria and enzymes that stimulate digestion and improve gut health. They also have positive effects on blood pressure and cholesterol, and some ­experts in Japan believe certain fermented ingredients provide relief from fatigue, anxiety and depression, and even have anti-cancerous properties. In Okinawa, they drink a fermented turmeric tea that is believed to be the key to the incredible longevity of the population.

My fascination with fermentation began in Japan. Five years ago, on my first visit, I found ­myself in a tiny sake bar called Yoramu in Kyoto where they served fresh tofu with a tiny dollop of a chilli paste called kanzuri. It changed my life. I have since ­returned to Japan every year to travel, eat and dig deeper into the incredibly rich culture.

Kanzuri is made in Niigata prefecture, which sits along the Sea of Japan. The climate and “long white winter” there has meant that fermentation and preservation has long been an essential part of the local diet — allowing fruits and vegetables to be eaten year-round. In more recent times — three to four generations — they have adapted their techniques by burying the vegetables in snow houses — called yuki­muro. By doing this they have discovered the natural refrigeration and steady humidity draws out the natural sugars and increases the levels of amino acid. Kanzuri is equal parts hot, salty, citrusy and umami. I have dedicated my life to trying to replicate it.

The following are a few of the ­ingredients, techniques and people I was fortunate to meet on my last visit to Japan, offering a small glimpse into the importance of fermentation in Japanese cuisine.


Terada Honke is located in the small town of Kozaki in Chiba prefecture, where they have been brewing sake since 1673. Terada Masaru grows his own rice and supplements it with the produce of other small ­organic growers in the area. His naturally brewed sake is completely handmade in the age-old Kimoto method and consists of three ingredients: rice, water and koji. I felt incredibly honoured to visit and learn the process and finish with a sake tasting perfectly matched with fresh tofu from across the road.

Nancy Singleton Hachisu is the author of Preserving the Japanese Way — one of my favourite books. American-born and married to a Japanese farmer, she has lived in rural Saitama for 30 years. It was a real privilege to visit her on her farm and talk preservation and the role of fermented foods in Japan. She also took me to Yamaki Jozo, a local producer of shoyu, miso, tofu and tsukemono.

Yasutaka Kijima is a sixth-­generation koji and miso-maker in Shimizu. His family has been producing in the same location for more than 180 years. As in the case of his forefathers, his is a manual and instinctive operation — his finger is his thermometer. My kind of fermentation.

At Kijima Kouji, koji is made in 100kg batches — some sold in bags (for the price of a packet of crisps) and the rest turned into miso. He sells both from the little shop he runs with his elderly mother. The sad thing is he is the end of the line.

His children aren’t interested in taking over the family business because there’s no money in it. Mass production and changing diets have hit his business hard. His family business will close its doors when he can no longer keep up the significant workload ­required to make ends meet. I was half-jokingly offered an apprenticeship.


Shibazuke is my favourite pickle … ever. One of my highlights of the trip was visiting the birthplace of the tsukemono, with all organic ­ingredients grown on site. Tami and Yuto have a beautiful farm nestled in the mountains north of Kyoto. They sell their vegetables at the local farmers market and ferment the significant excess of eggplant, cucumber and shiso the authentic way. The pickle bears little resemblance to the preservative-rich, MSG-laden, luminous purple product readily available throughout Kyoto.

“Shiba” means firewood, and the story goes that back in the day women used to walk 15km each way, sometimes twice a day, with firewood stacked on their heads to sell in Kyoto. They would also fill their pockets with the distinctive pickle to sell or trade to supplement their income. I can only hope the men were being useful.

Sugukizuke is another of the quintessential pickles of Kyoto (along with shibazuke and senmaizuke). Made from a variety of turnip called sugukina, its legitimate production is limited to the area of Kamigamo where it has been made for more than 300 years. Its first recorded history traces its origins to Kamigamo shrine. Gaining access to see it made was a challenge in itself as the families making suguki keep their methodology extremely close to home. I was very lucky to be invited (through friends of friends of friends) to visit master-pickler ­Hajime Watanane, and he talked me though the entire process: from growing the turnips through to the extensive and somewhat complicated fermentation. The results are amazing — crunchy, lactic and so delicious. Again, an entirely different product to what is generally found in the markets.

Soy sauce

Today in Japan only 1 per cent of shoyu is still made the traditional way — not mass produced, and free from the preservatives and flavour enhancers that dominate not only shoyu production but many (once artisanal) fermented foods. Of this 1 per cent, only a handful still use the original cedar barrels (kioke) for fermentation. The ones at Yamaroku on the island of Shodoshima were made in 1868 and hold 6000 litres each. The soy beans are grown on the island and the ­moromi is fermented for between two and four years before being pressed. The recipe has remained unchanged for five generations and, according to present owner Yasuo Yamamoto, “time is the only way to make the best flavour”. The place reeks of umami in a ­really good way.

Fermented sushi

Probably the most fascinating (and challenging) ferment of the trip was fermented sushi — nare­zushi. Sushi as we know it came from fermenting crucian carp in rice, then discarding the rice once the fish was preserved. The practice is believed to have started in the 8th century around lakes Biwa and Yogo in Shiga prefecture.

The tradition was largely abandoned during the Edo era and now lives on via a select few around lake Yogo (about two hours north of Kyoto). Tokuyamazushi is a beautiful restaurant sitting beside the lake surrounded by mountains and forest. Chef Hiro­aki Tokuyama feeds 15 people a day with a set menu highlighting his fermented fish. His process is traditional, using only natural ­ingredients: 12 months salting the fish, then fermenting for between seven and nine months in koji-­inoculated koshihikari rice. He is now beginning to experiment with other (non-lake) fish such as mackerel.

The flavour is intense: very acidic, blue cheesy, yoghurts, fishy. Hiroaki-san serves the fish in the rice it was fermented in, which by this stage has broken down to a thick congee-like consistency — it kind of softens the blow. I initially gagged — but out of respect “took one for the team” and finished not only my portion but also my guide’s and translator’s serves.

While I can’t say I loved it — it was unlike anything I had tasted before — what resonated from the experience was not only that a tradition is being kept alive but that this is now considered one of the greatest delicacies in Japanese cuisine. Tokuyamazushi is one of the hardest restaurants to get a reservation for, and is generally booked out a year in advance.

Adam James (@roughrice) is a cook and fermenter from Hobart. He has just completed a three-month, six-country Churchill Fellowship research trip in search of all things fermented.

Bacon Pickle Fries Are Your New Dream Snack

By Kate Streit   –   Magicvalley.com

Bacon Pickle Fries

There is no question that pickles are having a moment. There is an entire restaurant dedicated to pickles in New York City, and recipes featuring pickles are popping up everywhere, from pickle mozzarella sticks to pickle cupcakes. The pickle craze certainly shows no signs of stopping! Now, pickles are combining with another superstar ingredient to be your next dream snack: bacon pickle fries.

Bacon makes everything better, and it turns out that pickles are no exception. In fact, this may be the best pickle culinary creation yet. A super-simple recipe from Delish.com features just two ingredients: pickles and bacon. What else do you need in life, really? Check out the how-to video on Facebook:

How To Make Bacon Pickle Fries

Bacon Pickle Fries are your two favorite foods in one. Full recipe: http://dlsh.it/WjeRkFn

Posted by Delish on Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Be sure to wrap the bacon super-tight so the fries don’t unravel. Turning them once or twice in the oven will also ensure maximum crispiness, which is key.

As one commenter pointed out on the Facebook post, bacon pickle fries are actually low-carb if your New Year’s resolution is to lay off the starchy stuff.  Easy, delicious and low-carb? (Okay, to be fair, there’s probably a ton of fat in these because BACON, but at least they’re low-carb.)

The recipe suggests dipping these fries in ranch dressing, which sounds like the perfect accompaniment. Since the recipe is so easy, why not go all in and whip up your own homemade ranch dressing? This Delish.com recipe for avocado ranch dressing sounds particularly impressive, yet easy enough to make.

If you really want to get fancy, you could even make your own pickles. This recipe from The Kitchn said it’s possible to whip up a few jars of homemade dill pickles in less than 30 minutes. Make sure you pick the right cucumbers — Kirby or Persian varieties are recommended.

Yum! Looks like you have you contribution to the Superbowl party sorted!

[H/t Delish]

This story originally appeared on Simplemost. Checkout Simplemost for other great tips and ideas to make the most out of life.

Classic Way to Spice up Game Day Burgers and Franks

Jumbo Dill PickelNo game day menu would be complete without all-American hot dogs and hamburgers.

Pickles from sweet to dill and pickled peppers from mild to hot are excellent additions to beef, chicken and turkey burgers and make tasty companions for frankfurters. Whether used as a unique topping, blended into the meat or served simply on the side, pickles and pickled peppers make hamburgers and hot dogs much less ho-hum for practically pennies.