Some of us have what can be called a need for pickles – homemade dill pickles to be more specific. Nothing tastes better than a homemade old fashioned dill pickle, just like Grandma used to make. Many people enjoy eating them alongside a sandwich, a burger or as a snack all by themselves, just because they taste so good. But, most us don’t have the time to or want to do the work involved with making your own dill pickles – even though they are so worth it. A lot of recipes have been put to the pile of old recipes we want to get around to some day, but with the convenience of walking into the store and buying already made foods, the recipes stay at the bottom of the pile, never to see the light of day again. What a shame because nothing tastes as good as homemade.
Here’s the good news – you don’t have to make dill pickles like Grandma did – they will only taste like you did. Using a microwave to make pickles offers you the freedom of making a little or a lot depending on the number of cucumbers you have on hand or how many you and your family and friends consume.
Originally our great grandmothers and her siblings pickled cucumbers as a method of preserving the fresh vegetable through the cold winter months when they weren’t available. Remember this was long before the days that we became spoiled and were able to get any vegetable any time we wanted from the local store. Pickling has since evolved from their days and brought right up to date with the use of a microwave.
Microwave Dill Pickle Recipe
Add small, pickling cucumbers to a clean glass mason jar. If you don’t have small, pickling cucumbers slicing a large cucumber into ¼ inch thin rounds or into spears is acceptable.
Put 1 large clove of peeled garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoons dill, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric into the jar with the cucumbers. If you like a little zing in your pickles, add a hot pepper or hot pepper flakes to the mix.
Pour 1 cup water, 2 ½ cups apple cider vinegar and 2 teaspoons Kosher salt to a 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup. Put the filled Pyrex cup into the microwave and cook on high power for approximately 4 to 4 ½ minutes. Due to variations in microwave cooking times, watch the ingredients and cook them in the microwave until the liquid comes to a boil.
Put on a pair of oven mitts.
Take the Pyrex measuring cup out of the microwave carefully. Pour the liquid into the cucumber filled jar until the cucumbers are covered. If you don’t have enough to cover the cucumbers, add boiling water until the cucumbers are covered.
Drape a piece of microwave safe plastic wrap over the top of the jar.
Set the microwave on its highest setting and cook the cucumbers for 3 to 3 ½ minutes.Put on the oven mitts and remove the mason jar from the microwave.
Leave the plastic wrap in place and immediately screw the lid onto the mason jar.
Allow your pickles to cool to room temperature.
Place the jar of pickles into the refrigerator to chill for two to four hours or when they become cold.
When your jar of pickles is cold – eat and enjoy your old fashioned dill pickles
— made with a modern twist in no time.
Pickles have been around for centuries and have been a favorite since their advent. Even George Washington and his troops enjoyed a good pickle on their way into battle. Pickles date as far back as over 4,000 years ago. Although no one knows for sure where the idea for pickles originated, there is some evidence it was the people of Mesopotamia who came up their own recipes. Through time, experimentation and testing we have our own twist on pickles.
Throughout history, pickles have been mentioned and believed to help Cleopatra remain beautiful, keep Napoleons troops happy and healthy. Christopher Columbus always had a stash of pickles on his ships. The sailors of the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria all kept scurvy away with … you guessed it pickles. Christopher Columbus wasn’t the only explorer to have a soft spot in his heart for these cucumber treats – Amerigo Vespucci was a merchant. What kind of merchant you may wonder – a pickle merchant.
Did You Know? Some Fun Pickle Facts
Pickles have a high Vitamin C content. Christopher Columbus knew this, which is why he had his sailors and crewman eat pickles every day.
During World War II, approximately 40 percent of all pickles made were shipped to the soldier fighting the war.
Berrien Springs, Michigan holds the distinction of being known as the Christmas Pickle Capital of the World. Note that says the world not the United States, which makes this the highest pickle honor ever!
The average American eats almost 9 pounds of pickles per year.
When eating a pickle, a true connoisseur judges the pickle not only on taste, but how loud the crunch is. The further away the crunch can be heard the better the quality of pickle.
Pickles are a great way to get kids to eat their vegetables, oh wait according to the Supreme Court because they have seeds, they are a fruit. Well, I guess pickles are a great way to get kids to eat their fruit.
Pickle Nutrition Facts – According to the USDA
Pickles are fat free. 0 saturated fats, 0 trans fats. That’s why we love them so much!
Pickles are high in salt content, coming in at a whopping 1251 mg of sodium per serving.
4 grams of carbs
2 grams of dietary fiber
2 grams of sugar
Pickles are only 17 calories per serving.
Pickles contain vitamins:
Vitamin A – 5%
Vitamin C – 2%
Calcium – 6%
Iron -- 2%
Ok, so pickles don’t have a whole lot going for them in the way of nutritional value, but they sure do taste good.