Small pickling cucumbers, in season now, are crisp and lack the bitterness sometimes found in larger varieties. They do not need to be peeled, and are perfect for making quick refrigerator pickles and for eating raw.

“The fun thing about refrigerator pickles is that you need no recipe whatsoever,” says gilintx. “Mix some sort of vinegar, some salt, some water, and some sugar together in a saucepan and heat them up until the solids dissolve. If you’d like you can add a clove of garlic, a stem of some herb (thyme, dill), or perhaps a dried hot pepper. Pour that solution over your cukes (I prefer quartered spears, but that’s your call, too) and give them a few hours in the fridge. Taste your brine as you go, of course, to make sure you got the right mix, but otherwise, it really is that easy.” Hounds particularly like to use rice wine vinegar and cider vinegar for their quick pickles.

Aside from pickling, hounds use these cucumbers as they do other varieties, and some prefer them. “I slice them into a salad with chiles, tomatoes, za’atar, sumac, lemon juice, and pomegranate molasses,” says bitsubeats. “So great for the summer.” scubadoo97 makes a breakfast salad of diced pickling cucumbers, diced red or yellow bell peppers and tomatoes, olives, and feta, dressed with olive oil, citrus juice and zest (lemon, lime, orange, or tangerine), and salt and pepper.

Discuss: What to do with pickling cucumbers?
4 pickling cukes

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