The shame of it all, however, is that we tend to avoid so much of what’s out there because we either don’t know how to use it or we’ve used it to death and are bored to death by it. Honestly, how much grilled zucchini can one endure? You swear this is the last veggie pasta salad you’ll ever eat...ever! And yet here it is again at the table.
This is where quick pickling comes in. This simple process of soaking veggies in a salty, sweet-and-sour brine opens the door to interesting and delicious possibilities. We at Martha & Marley Spoon know this to be true and, like all true zealots, want everyone to know this too! Garlicky dill pickles or bread and butter pickles are a few of the obvious ones, but radishes make for a peppery and crunchy addition to Asian dishes, and these are great in a cocktail.
Pickled cabbage, a good friend of Asian, Mexican, and Eastern European kitchens, is a refreshing and crunchy foil to rich, spicy, or fatty foods.
And if you think fruit can’t be pickled, well, think again! Peaches at the peak of season, pickled in vinegar and chiles, couldn’t be more delicious.
I’ve spent a lot of time with my face in a pot of sugary vinegar and this is by far my favorite end of summer endeavor. I even wrote a book, The Quick Pickle Cookbook, where I not only pickle everything from apricots to zucchini, but use them (and their pickle brine) in super interesting ways. You don’t have to wait until your Martha & Marley Spoon box arrives to start pickling cucumbers which, yummy as it will certainly be, only yields enough for your meal.
After a leisurely walk through the farmers’ market, my basket will be full of possibilities, and I hope yours will be too.