Recipe Exchange: 3 courses for a delicious dinner

Margaret Warr, News Journal correspondent

Doris Melton shares the ultimate lemon sour cream pound cake made with fresh lemon juice and topped with a light lemon glaze. Her friend makes this cake every year for her mother’s birthday. She raves that this cake is one of the best she has ever tasted.

The baked chicken breasts with jalapeno peppers dish makes cooking easier. Melton fills each breast with the rich flavors of cheese and jalapenos secured with bacon. This moist and juicy chicken is served with rice salad. She says this rice salad is a better accompaniment than potato salad.

Rice Salad

1 cup converted rice

2 cups mayonnaise

2 cups diced celery

1 medium onion, finely chopped

4 teaspoons mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 red apple, diced

4 boiled eggs, chopped

8 radishes, sliced

1 cucumber, pared and diced

Cook rice according to package directions. Transfer to bowl. Cover and chill.

Add mayonnaise, celery, onion, mustard and salt to chilled rice; mix well. Cover and chill.

Stir in remaining ingredients before serving.

Baked Chicken Breast with Jalapeno Peppers

6 to 8 boneless chicken breasts

Jalapeno peppers, fresh

1 (6-ounce) package shredded Pepper Jack, jalapeno jack or sharp Cheddar cheese

1 pound bacon

Salt & pepper, to taste

Prepare chicken breast with meat mallet until flat (do not over pound, breast should be thick enough to be wrapped). Halve jalapeno peppers, remove seeds and veins. Place desired number of jalapeno peppers and 1 ounce cheese in each chicken breast and fold. Wrap each breast with bacon strip and secure with toothpick.

Place on baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes. Check for doneness. Salt and pepper.

May be cooked on grill instead of baking, if desired.

Lemon Sour Cream Pound Cake

3 cups sugar

3 cups all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup butter, softened

1 (8-ounce) carton sour cream

6 large eggs, room temperature, beaten

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Place ingredients in 4-quart mixing bowl in order. Beat at low speed with heavy-duty mixer for 1 minute, pausing to scrape down sides. Beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Spoon batter into greased and floured 10-inch tube pan.

Bake at 325 degrees for 90 minutes or until test done. Cool cake in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes; remove from pan and cool completely.

For the lemon glaze

1 cup powdered sugar

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (optional)

Stir together until smooth. Drizzle over cool cake.

Quick and Easy Fermented Dill Pickles

Tags: pickles, fermentation, food preservation, pickling, Colorado, Deb Tejada

Cucumber Pickles

Have you ever wanted to…
• make your own pickles, but became discouraged and overwhelmed with the amount of work involved with traditional recipes?
• make just one — or two — jars of pickles and not have to deal with canning them?
• introduce more probiotics into your diet, without the time, unpredictability and potential odors associated with fermenting your own vegetables?

Well, here’s a recipe that’s the answer to all of the above. These quick, easy and delicious fermented pickles are made right in the jar. They take very little work or prep time and are delicious, healthful and ready to eat in a week. Not bad for about half an hour of work!

I spent years searching for a recipe that would result in pickles that tasted just as good as the barrel-fermented ones I ate as a kid. “Manufactured” pickles pale in comparison. Like other prepared foods (or embalmed, as I think of them), they’re soaked in artificial ingredients and their goodness has been cooked out of them through pasteurization and high-heat canning processes.

Recently, fermented foods are becoming available at some grocery stores, which is handy if you don’t want the satisfaction of making your own or the privilege of adjusting seasonings to your own liking.

But to me, nothing tastes better than homemade. And nothing tastes better than a homemade something that was also quick and easy to make!

Last summer I finally found a recipe that not only resulted in great-tasting pickles, but also included natural lacto-fermentation plus raw vinegar, which takes the worry and extended wait time out of the fermentation process.

Now, when my garden is just beginning to produce pickling cucumbers and I don’t have enough to start an entire crock, I make one jar at a time using this recipe. You can make more than one quart at a time, just adjust the ingredients accordingly.

Homemade Dill Pickles

Lacto-Fermented Garlic Dill Pickles

Makes 1 quart

Recipe adapted from A Platter of Figs, David Tannis

Main Ingredients:

• 5-6 medium pickling cucumbers (about 1 lb) – look for firm, unblemished, bumpy ones
• 2 garlic cloves, chopped coarsely
• 1 sprig thyme
• 1 sprig oregano
• 1 bay leaf
• 1 small bunch of dill
• 3-4 small grapevine leaves (optional, but keeps the pickles crisp)

Brine Ingredients:

• 2 tsp coriander seeds
• 1-2 tsp turmeric powder
• 1 tsp fennel seeds
• 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
• 1-2 TB sea salt (I prefer a rounded tablespoon)
• 1-1/2 cups filtered water
• 1/2 cup raw, unfiltered cider vinegar

Pickling Supplies


1. Wash the cucumbers, but don’t scrub them (you want to leave some lactobacillus bacteria on them) and rub off any spines.

2. Trim about 1/8 inch off the blossom end of the cucumbers. This removes an enzyme that can make your pickles limp. I also cut the cucumbers into halves or quarters so they fit together better in the jar.

3. Put the other Main Ingredients in a 1 quart largemouth canning jar and then pack cucumbers in as tightly as possible (try not to bruise them in the process).

4. Mix the brine ingredients together in a bowl and then pour the mixture into the jar to cover the cucumbers completely, leaving about 1/2 inch headspace.

5. Cover with a canning jar lid and band, write the date or day on the jar (a Sharpie works), place the jar in a bowl (to catch any overflow or leakage on the days the jar is inverted) and once a day, for a week, flip the jar over to redistribute the spices that will tend to settle to the bottom.

6. After a week, keep the jar in the refrigerated. Enjoy!

The original recipe said these would keep for a month in the refrigerator, but I have some that are several months old and they are just as crispy and delicious as they started out. Remember that with fermented vegetables, if they look or smell bad or appear slimy, don’t eat them!

Next I’ll be experimenting with this recipe to pickle different vegetables… any suggestions?

Deb Tejada is an urban farmer, foodie, do-it-yourselfer, graphic designer, illustrator and web developer living in sunny Colorado.  When she’s not in the kitchen or garden, you can find her at The Herban Farmer.

Candied Jalapeños

by Rececca Gagnon – Journal Sentinel


  • Description:  Rebecca Gagnon, author of “The Little Book of Home Preserving” (Peter Pauper Press, 2013), said she “can never get enough of” these Candied Jalapeños, which she makes every year.“They can be used on practically everything — from tacos and nachos, to eggs and grilled cheese sandwiches,” she writes.
  • Makes:  about 7 pint jars


2 cups apple cider vinegar
6 cups granulated sugar (or use raw sugar instead — it will make a darker syrup)
3 pounds firm, fresh jalapeño peppers, sliced about 1/8 inch thick (room-temperature peppers are best)


Wash canning jars in hot soapy water. Prepare an extra jar or two over the yield, in case you have more than you expect.

Sterilize the jars by submerging them in water in a large pot (or water bath canner), bringing them up to a boil, and keeping them at a boil for 10 minutes. Then keep them warm until ready to fill. You can either keep them in the water (bringing it down to a simmer) until you are ready to fill them — at that time remove them with a jar lifter and drain each jar individually — or you can keep them in the oven, at 250 degrees (remove the jars from the water bath after boiling and place them on a baking sheet and keep them in the oven until ready to be filled).

Prepare the rings and lids by placing them in a small saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring them to a bare simmer, cover the pan, turn off the heat and let them sit until ready to use. Be careful not to boil the lids, as it can cause the seals to break down.

Bring your water bath up to a boil (you’ll have leftover water from the sterilization process, but you may need to add more to ensure that you’ll have enough water to cover the jars by 1 to 2 inches).

In a preserving pot set over medium-high heat, bring the apple cider vinegar and sugar to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.

Add the jalapeño pepper slices to the pot. Turn up the heat and bring the pot back up to a boil, and then reduce heat and simmer 4 minutes.

Set out the warm jars, and use a slotted spoon to transfer the jalapeno peppers into the jars to within ¼ inch of the tops. (Keep the remaining syrup in the pot.)

Heat the pot on medium-high heat, and bring the syrup to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for 6 minutes. (The syrup should reach about 220 degrees.)

Ladle the boiling syrup into the jars over the jalapeño slices, distributing equally among the jars. Insert a chopstick (or a small icing spatula), into the bottom of the jar two or three times to release any trapped pockets of air. Adjust the level of the syrup if necessary, to keep the jars full to within ¼ inch from the tops.

Use a lint-free cloth dipped in clean water to wipe the top of the jars, and then apply the lids and rings. Tighten rings only to “fingertip tightness,” which means do not tighten too much, but tighten enough to be snug. Air needs to be able to escape the inside of the jar.

Load the filled and covered jars upright into the water bath. Bring the water bath back up to a boil and process for 15 minutes. Begin timing after a full, rolling boil has returned.

Turn off the heat and remove the jars (with tongs or jar lifter) to a towel-lined counter top. Listen for the lids to “ping,” which will happen as the jars begin to cool and the seals are formed. Do not touch or disturb the jars until they are completely cool (12 to 24 hours).

Remove the rings from the jars and check the seals. The lids should not buckle up and down and you should be able to lift each jar carefully by its lid only. Store the jars in a cool dark place (without the rings on) for up to one year.

Note: Don’t forget that jalapeños pack some heat, so there are some precautionary measures you may want to consider. While slicing the jalapeños, you might want to wear plastic or rubber gloves — the heat can irritate your skin. Also make sure to work in a well-ventilated area when preparing this recipe.

The vegetable you should start pickling ASAP


by Alexandra Stafford

Last summer I was lucky enough to be the recipient of a friend’s backyard vegetable bounty. Nearly every week I could count on opening my front door to find a basket teeming with beefsteak tomatoes, cucumbers, snap peas, chard, kale, and tubs of Sun Gold cherry tomatoes. I could also count on finding, snuck below the tomatoes and peas, a few dozen zucchini affixed with a Post-It note reading: “Sorry!”

(Alexandra Stafford/Courtesy Food52)

It’s a familiar cry during the summer, but I wasn’t about to complain — I could only hope to find anything as prolific in my garden. And besides, with so many resources out there now, should anyone fear the onslaught of zucchini this summer? From butter to quickbreads, pancakes to gratins, we know how to quickly pare down our haul.

(Alexandra Stafford/Courtesy Food52)

And here’s one more to add to your arsenal: pickles. This recipe comes from The Zuni Café Cookbook, which credits the pickles’ intense, saturated flavor to “careful purging” and cold brining: Soak slices of squash in a salt-water brine to draw out its water and cause it to soften. After one hour of this “purging,” the squash is primed to better soak up the brine. Remove the squash from the salt bath and then submerge it in a mixture of vinegar, sugar, dry mustard, mustard seeds, and turmeric. Leave them like this for a day in the fridge, and they’re ready.


(Alexandra Stafford/Courtesy Food52)

In the preface to the recipe, Judy Rodgers notes that this isn’t the recipe (unfortunately) to turn to when you’ve inherited one too many zucchini baseball bats, nor is it a good use for expensive fingerling or baby zucchini. Rogers suggests using firm, medium-sized zucchini or green pattypan squash.

On their own, these brilliant yellow, tangy pickles are on the sweet side, which concerned me initially. But after weeks of watching friends and neighbors gobble them up with burgers and sandwiches, I stopped thinking about cutting back the sugar — there is, after all, a reason these pickles accompany every burger at Zuni Cafe. The next time you find yourself with a glut of zucchini, think about preserving them — they’ll never disappear so quickly.

(Alexandra Stafford/Courtesy Food52)

Choosing, storing, and prepping your zucchini: Look for zucchini with smooth, unblemished skin that feel heavy for their size. Small- to medium-sized zucchini are ideal — large ones tend to be seedy, watery, starchy, and less flavorful. Store them in an open bag in the vegetable bin of your refrigerator and use within a week if possible. Zucchini can be dirty, so before using, wash to remove any grit clinging to their skins. Trim off each end; no need to peel.

After you’ve put up your pickles, here are a few more ways to use your zucchini:

(Alexandra Stafford/Courtesy Food52)

Zuni Cafe zucchini pickles

Makes 1 1/2 to 2 pints

1 pound zucchini
1 small yellow onion
2 tablespoons salt, a little more if using kosher
2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed yellow and/or brown mustard seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

This story was originally published on The vegetable you should start pickling ASAP

Cantaloupe among the fruits that gained pickling popularity in the 1800s

Hanna Raskin Email @hannaraskin – The Post and Courier

If Charleston’s amateur pickle makers didn’t rush to their gardens and markets in search of preservation-worthy melons after reading a cooking column in the July 1, 1917, issue of The Sunday News, the columnist’s derisive tone was probably to blame.

“Here is a sweet pickle recipe for cantaloupe,” groused the author of Mary’s Housekeeping, styled as a conversation between a mother and daughter. “I don’t care for it very much myself, but there are others who are quite fond of it, so I am giving it to you anyway.”

R.J. Moody, chef at Spero restaurant.
Enlarge R.J. Moody, chef at Spero restaurant. Wade Spees/Staff
The daughter was unimpressed: “I believe I’ll just take my cantaloupes plain, if you please.”
But as the columnist noted, cantaloupe pickles — often likened to watermelon rind pickles — were wildly popular in certain circles. Considered a guaranteed extension of summer, the pickles were relatively easy to make and elegant enough for stylish luncheons.

The background
Pickling is practiced around the world. According to “The Oxford Companion to American Food and Drink,” ancient Mesopotamians were well-acquainted with the concept of preserving food in spiced saltwater brine. In North America, indigenous people pickled meat in maple-sap vinegar.

Each culture has its pickle preferences. The sour pickles central to Eastern European cuisine, for example, were overshadowed in Western Europe by sweet pickles. Yet despite the British taste for pickles made with sugar syrup, pickle scholars say the success of the American sweet pickle should be credited to the Pennsylvania Dutch. The German immigrants, who settled around Philadelphia in the early 1700s, practiced a style of cooking that was predicated on the constant balance of sour and sweet, a philosophy that led to frequent tabletop appearances by gherkins.

During the 19th century, cookbooks regularly listed recipes for pickled fruits. While protecting delicate strawberries and grapes from spoilage in the pre-refrigeration era was the primary goal, home cooks also recognized the inherent magnificence of what blooms briefly in summertime. “Cantaloupes now rank among the real aristocrats of the food world,” Louise Gunton Royston in 1916 advised readers of Table Talk: The National Food Magazine.

The recipe
Royston suggested turning cantaloupes into sherbet, salads, preserves and pickles, boiled in a sugar-heavy solution of vinegar, cinnamon and cloves. Most contemporary recipes featured the same set of ingredients, although one of the three cantaloupe pickle recipes published in 1879’s “Housekeeping in Old Virginia” called for the melon to be boiled in “strong ginger tea,” and then seasoned with white ginger and mace, in addition to cinnamon.

Cinnamon and cloves were the spices included in The Sunday News’ recipe, which also specified cider vinegar and “Coffee C” sugar, apparently a brand produced by sugar manufacturer Stuart’s.

The update
“It was great,” says RJ Moody of Spero, who followed the original recipe pretty faithfully. “It’s very much like other fruit pickles I’ve made.”

Because the cinnamon and cloves reminded Moody of pho, a problem that likely didn’t afflict Charlestonians in 1917, he spiced the pickles with burnt ginger that he happened to have on hand.

Moody is considering developing a dish around the pickles next year.

“I’d definitely want to do something with country ham,” Moody says. “It’s a little on the sweeter side, which cries for salt to balance it out: It screamed like it needed pork.”

Published July 1, 1917:
Select melons that are not quite ripe; open, scrape out the pulp, peel, slice and lay in a weak brine overnight. The next morning boil in a weak alum water till transparent; lift out, drain, wipe dry, then drop into boiling spiced syrup and cook 20 minutes. To make the syrup, take three pints “Coffee C” sugar to one quart good cider vinegar. The spices commonly used for this variety of pickle are cloves and cinnamon, and the proportion two teaspoonfuls of the former and four tablespoons of the latter to each gallon.

Homemade Zucchini Pickles—No Joke!


Why do you lock your car doors in the Hamptons during the summer? If you leave your car unlocked, someone might fill it with zucchini.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the summer squash in your garden, do what I do and pickle ’em. They’ll look really appealing this winter, I promise. And they make a great gift. I gave some of these pickles to my friend Gael Greene last month and she insisted that I share the recipe. Here it is:


Zucchini Pickle

2 pounds thinly sliced zucchini (or yellow summer squash)
1 medium onion, quartered and sliced
¼ cup canning salt
3 cups cider vinegar
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons yellow mustard seed
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon turmeric

Yield: about 2 pints

Dissolve salt in a quart of cold water in an earthenware bowl. Combine squash and onion in bowl. Add water to cover. Let stand at least one hour, up to two hours. Drain, rinse and drain well.

Combine remaining ingredients in a large saucepot. Bring to a boil. Turn off heat. Add vegetables. Let stand one to two hours.


Bring all ingredients to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.

Pack hot vegetables into hot, prepared canning jars. Pour liquid into jars leaving 1/4” headspace. Place lids and rings.

Process 15 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

Let pickle age at least two days before serving to develop flavor.


100-year recipe / Taste of Japanese mom / Instant vegetable pickles

by The Yomiuri Shimbun   –   The Japan News

Japanese pickles, called tsukemono, have a long history. A description of gourds and other vegetables preserved with salt has been found on wooden plates that date from the Nara period in the eighth century.

As many as 64 different pickles, including those developed in the intervening period, were introduced in “Shiki Tsukemono Shiokagen,” a book about pickles from the Edo period (1603-1867). The book says that pickles are the most important element in meals and that they cannot be spared in any household.

Pickles were considered important as a preserved food and a side dish, and they became a basic item in Japanese cuisine together with rice and miso soup. A main dish and another side dish would be added to the combination.

Pickles changed after World War II. The amount of salt used for pickling decreased rapidly. According to Tokyo Kasei University Prof. Shigeo Miyao, a food microbiology expert, the salt content of takuan — pickled daikon — was reduced from about 12 percent 50 years ago to about 3 percent today.

A lot of salt had been used for preservation, but the situation changed. “Developments in makers’ preservation technologies, such as cold storage and packaging, meant they coped with people’s growing interest in the link between salt content and health,” Miyao said.

Homemade pickles also changed. With the Westernization of foods, traditional pickles came to be served less frequently in meals.

The recipe introduced today was published in 1997 in The Yomiuri Shimbun. After being pickled with salt for a short time, the vegetables are dressed mainly with soy sauce. The vegetables can be eaten in high quantities as the taste of myoga, Japanese ginger, stimulates the appetite.

Instant pickles became a popular vegetable cooking method with the hit “Asazuke no Moto” (Mix for instant pickles) launched by Ebara Foods Industry, Inc. in 1991.

Yasuhiko Maeda, a professor emeritus at Utsunomiya University who is an expert on food chemistry, said: “Contemporary pickles that are fresh and have vivid colors are suitable for enjoying the flavor and taste of the vegetables themselves.”

According to a survey by the Tokyo-based Better Home Association, which was conducted in 2011 with responses from about 400 women attending its cooking classes, only 10 percent of respondents said they regularly made nukazuke, pickles in salty fermented rice bran. Those who stopped making such pickles cited reasons such as, “It’s troublesome to take care of the bed of salted rice bran every day.”

Washoku has been recorded on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list. Fermentation expert Takeo Koizumi said: “I hope people also cherish traditional pickles that have distinctive flavors arising from lactic acid fermentation.”

Koizumi launched an organization for publicizing the merits of Japan’s fermented foods inside and outside the country in 2013. He said pickled vegetables can be used to season other dishes. For example, pickled Chinese cabbage can be mixed into fried vegetables, or into nabe stews.

“I’d like to convey to people the unknown charms of Japanese pickles,” Koizumi said.

Our recipe for instant vegetable pickles

(From the July 18, 1997, edition)

Ingredients (serves four):

2 eggplants

1 cucumber

200g cabbage

40g carrot

3 myoga Japanese ginger

8 shiso leaves

1 piece kombu kelp, 5 centimeters on a side

3g dried bonito shavings

1 tbsp white roasted sesame seeds

(any vegetables available can be combined)

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp mirin

1 tbsp vinegar


1. Cut the kombu into thin strips with scissors and soak in a sauce made of the soy sauce, mirin and vinegar for half a day.

2. Halve eggplants lengthwise and cut into 1-centimeter-wide slices diagonally. Halve a cucumber lengthwise and cut into 7- or 8-millimeter-wide slices diagonally.

3. Cut cabbage into 2- by 5-centimeter rectangular pieces. Cut carrot into 1- by 3-centimeter pieces.

4. Slice myoga lengthwise, thinly. Remove the center stem of the shiso leaves and cut finely.

5. Mix vegetables. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 tablespoons of water over the vegetables and mix well. Put a light weight on them and leave for about an hour.

6. When vegetables become soft, wash with water roughly and wring dry.

7. Mix in dried bonito shavings and the sauce. Serve in a bowl, sprinkled with sesame seeds.


Eats: Jalapeno Bread And Butter Pickles

By Aimee Misovich –

Hello! As mentioned in my previous post, I really enjoyed sampling all the goodies at Galena Canning Company’s two stores in Galena, IL. It was so hard to choose a favorite or two for purchase that I ended up not buying anything. I came very close to purchasing a jar of their jalapeno bread and butter pickles though.

I normally prefer garlic dills to the sweeter pickles, but when jalapenos are the main item in the jar, the combination of sweet and hot was a good one. When we returned home I decided to see if I could find a recipe for jalapeno bread and butter pickles online.

And I was in luck with this recipe, which comes from Elise Bauer’sSimply Recipes blog. I’m not a canner, but with Bauer’s recipe the pickled veggies are stored in a refrigerator after being made – no further processing is needed. She says they’ll last for a year or two thus stored.

(For those that do canning, she does mention that possibility at the end of the recipe.)

Minus a couple of the spices called for in the recipe and two pounds of jalapenos, I had everything for the recipe already on hand. So needless to say, I headed down to our Farmer’s Market yesterday and got those jalapenos.

Once home, according to recipe instructions, I cut off the jalapeno stems, then cut the peppers in half. I was supposed to remove the seeds and ribs next but left them in to keep the heat level up. I can handle a LOT of chili pepper fire, plus Bauer says that the bread and butter jalapenos seem to lose some of their punch after awhile.

Skipping this step made the cutting-up prep go much faster too! But I don’t advise bypassing the de-seeding if you want a mild level of heat.

Added one pound of sliced onions and the specified type of salt to the veggies – either canning, kosher or sea salt can be used. I used sea salt because that’s what I had on hand.

Here’s the cut-up jalapenos, onions and salt:

The mixture had to sit, covered, in the refrigerator four hours, then rinsed of the salt a couple of times.

Then it was into a pot along with white and apple vinegars, sugar and various spices:

You may recall earlier in the post that I had all the spices on hand except for two – star anise and a cardamon pod. Did I go to the upscale spice shop downtown to see if they had these? No, instead I looked up other jalapeno bread and butter pickle recipes online to see if they included those spices in their recipes.

They did not, so I felt comfortable in staying away from the spice shop. However, I did notice that one of the other recipes included 1 1/2 teaspoons of garlic powder, so I added that.

(Note: I later learned that typically bread and butter pickles don’t call for cinnamon and cloves, but Bauer’s recipe did, both in whole form. I have these on hand, so I put them in the pickling mixture. You may experiment with leaving these spices out if you don’t have cinnamon sticks and whole cloves in your pantry.)

Above, the jalapenos and onions are simmering in the pickling mixture. Bauer says to cook just until the jalapenos turn from bright to dull green. This step only took a few minutes. I stirred several times so that the peppers would evenly cook.

Then it was just a matter of placing the mixture into two one-quart jars:

One mayonnaise jar, one canning jar – and one cook eager to see how the pickled peppers turned out! In the recipe’s comment section, Bauer suggests waiting a day before sampling. Instead, I waited only until they cooled down, then tried one. Fantastic! And they really did taste very close to the ones I’d tasted at Galena Canning Company.

Added some of the peppers to my lunchtime sandwich earlier today:

The jalapeno bread and butter pickles turned out to be a delicious complement to a turkey and Swiss on homemade potato bread (along with Farmer’s Market lettuce and tomato plus some other yummy stuff). Hey, do I eat good or what?

And I know there’ll be plenty of good eating ahead with these spicy-sweet pickles. I am sure glad I made them – and now you can too if you go to the link above.



YIELD: Makes 2 quarts


For the brine:

  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons spices (e.g., peppercorns, coriander seeds, and/or mustard seeds)
  • 2 cups water

For the pickles:

  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed
  • 4 chiles de árbol or jalapenos (if desired)
  • 4 smashed garlic cloves

Special equipment:

  • Two 1 quart canning jars with lids


For the brine:
Bring 1 cup distilled white vinegar, 2 tablespoons kosher salt, 2 teaspoons sugar, up to 2 tablespoons spices (e.g., peppercorns, coriander seeds, and/or mustard seeds), and 2 cups water to a boil in a saucepan. Pour over vegetables in jars.

For the pickles:
Divide 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed, 1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed, 4 chiles de árbol or jalapenos (if desired), and 4 smashed garlic cloves between jars.

Dividing evenly, pour hot brine (see formula, left)—using 1 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes for the spice—into jars and cover. Let cool, then chill.

Do Ahead
Green beans can be pickled 2 months ahead. Keep chilled.

cooks’ note: Also try it with…Cucumbers, fennel, okra, cauliflower, jalapenos, cascabellas, chile peppers

Food Notes: ‘Pickle addict’ wins Akron contest

By Katie Byard  Beacon Journal staff writer

Yeah, yeah, yeah … I relished the assignment.

And it was a cuke contest.

Those puns are courtesy of Beacon Journal colleague Jim Mackinnon, about my task of helping to judge this year’s Pickle Making Contest, organized by the nonprofit Downtown Akron Partnership.

This was the fifth year for the contest, held in conjunction with the Friday farmers market at Lock 3 park downtown. Most contestants had dropped off their pickled this and that at the Downtown Akron Partnership office; others showed up Friday with their entries.

Delila Owens, a professor at the University of Akron, was one of the few contestants who showed up for judging, and she was one of the winners, snagging first place in the “sweet” pickle category.

The other winners were: dill pickles, Dave Clay of Richfield; hot pickles, Chris Robertson, Akron; and other pickled vegetable, Bob Epling, Green.

It was a blind judging, so Owens’ presence didn’t sway the judges.

I’ve included her recipe below. She calls her entry “Sweet and Sour Lime Pickles,” and like many refrigerator pickles, it is easy. You put cucumbers and the other ingredients into a container (Owens used a plastic one-quart container) and you let it sit in the fridge. I’m going to try it with some beans I have on hand.

Owens did let us know she was there, and made it clear that she was hoping to win. It was a low-key affair, with myself and three other judges sitting at a table under a small tent at the market, sampling pickled this and that from little plastic cups.

After the contest, Owens told me she’s a “pickle addict.” This was her first pickling contest.

At UA, Owens is an associate professor of school counseling and counselor education. Outside of work, she loves to cook and loves pickles. “I eat them daily,” she said.

The other judges were Bryan Edwards from the Akron office of the Economic and Community Development Institute; Heather Linebarger, a senior associate at accounting firm Bruner Cox; and Beth Magalski, branch manager of Citizens Bank downtown.

The next contest at Lock 3 is the Salsa Making Contest at 11:30 a.m. Sept. 4. Salsa should be turned in Sept. 1-3 at the Downtown Akron Partnership office at Greystone Hall, 103 S. High St. Office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Registration forms and rules are available at by calling Anthony Long at 330-374-7676 or

Here’s Owens’ recipe:

Sweet and Sour

Lime Pickles

About 7 pickling cucumbers or two “giant” cucumbers

1 lime (remove peel and chunk up “for the flavor kick,” Owens says)

3 tsp. sugar

1 tsp. salt; more as needed

1 cup cider vinegar

1 cup water

Place chunks of lime in bottom of plastic container. Bring sugar, vinegar and water to boil in a saucepan. Let cool and pour over sliced cucumbers in container. Sprinkle salt on top. Refrigerate overnight.

Being a beet fan, my favorite pickled vegetable was David Boughton’s beets. Boughton, of Akron, sells produce from the family’s Copley Township farm each Friday at the farmers market at Lock 3. The market is open from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Fridays through Sept. 11.

Boughton said he added dried orange zest to the pickled beets recipe from the Ball canning jar folks: