Fourth of July BBQ Must Haves: Dill Pickles

When I left the restaurant Chicago q for the first time, I said to Brian, "I love this restaurant because they give you free pickles." Since that first blissful moment of free pickles, chips and mouth watering BBQ (and several return trips), I've been on a mission to create a quick pickle recipe of my own. At any given time, you can find approximately 5 jars of various pickles in my fridge. Chips, gherkins, wedges, whole. Always dill, always delicious. It's about darn time I had a container of my own. So easy, and so fun for summer.

So, what do you need? A cool jar. Pickling cucumbers. Vinegar. Spices. GO! I can usually find pickling cucumbers in the produce section at my grocery store, but I found these at the farmer's market.

Spicy Dill Quick Pickles

10 small pickling cucumbers (sliced 1/2 inch thick)
5-7 cloves garlic (minced)
3/4 tbsp dried dill
1/2 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 tbsp whole peppercorns
3 tbsp sea salt
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tbsp whole brown mustard seeds
2 cups apple cider vinegar
2 cups water

In a medium sauce pan, combine vinegar, water, peppercorns, sugar, salt and mustard seeds. Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer. Let simmer for about 3 minutes, until sugar and salt dissolve. Remove from heat and let cool for about 15 minutes. 

In your jar, add cucumber chips, minced garlic, crushed red pepper flakes and dill. When the brine has cooled, pour all the contents over the cucumbers. Seal tightly and refrigerate. Let them rest at least 1 day before testing. I ate some the next day and they were quite good. Crisp and delicious.

Bring a batch of these to your holiday BBQs to serve with burgers and sandwiches!

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