Results tagged pickles from David Lebovitz

A Recipe for Easy Pickled Carrots

weck jar full of carrots

Before I went away for recent my trip to New York City, as a gesture of extraordinary kindness to the person who I swapped apartments with, I cleaned out some of the scary things in my fridge. Nevertheless, she managed to find the African peanut butter, but curiously missed the luscious jar of salted butter caramel from Henri Le Roux in Brittany. What’s up with that? I guess that means there’s another apartment swap in my future.

Coming back, the fridge was still spotless, but after a few days, I realized there was too much empty space in there, so now it’s back to being crammed full. Part of the reason is that I came across these gorgeous mixed carrots at the marche d’Aligre. It’s hard to find vegetables like this around here, and if you do, for the price you pay, you may as well stay at a fancy hotel in New York instead and not worry about how clean your refrigerator is for incoming guests.

carrots ginger sugar

At the market here in Paris that day, the vendor has baskets bursting with all sorts of organic produce, all for €2.8 per kilo, for whatever you chose. I filled up my basket and handed it over, and when I got the tab, I realized that perhaps I should’ve exercised a bit more restraint.

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Pickled Red Onions Recipe

pickled red onions

I’m a big fan of any recipe that uses minimal ingredients—but has maximum impact.

And I especially warm up to a recipe that’s also easy to make. I like this idea so much that I wished I’d come up with the idea before the minimalistic Mark Bittman did. Because if I did, perhaps I’d be writing for the New York Times and Mr. Bittman would be sitting here pondering whether his socks were goofy or not.

But sour grapes do not make a good sorbet, although tart vinegar does makes for great pickled onions. And like any good minimalistic recipe, this is super-simple and anyone can feel like a pro-pickler in less than cinq minutes.

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Pickled Sour Cherries Recipe

griottes

Believe it or not, there’s much more to France than Paris.

Or so they say. I obviously don’t get out much, but last year when I went to Camp Cassoulet, also in attendance was Jennifer of Chez LouLou. Although all who were invited I knew previously, she was the only one I didn’t. Brave girl!

LouLou lives in the Southwest of France, which I think it just beyond the 13th arrondissement. (I haven’t tried to take the métro there, but that’s where I think it is…isn’t it?)

She’d written up an intriguing recipe on her blog for Sour Cherries with Bay Leaf and bookmarked the page, assuming I wouldn’t see sour cherries in Paris: they’re about as hard to find here as they are in the states.

griottes

So when I saw fresh griottes, I almost lunged at the stand, and walked away with 2 kilos (about 4½ pounds).

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Arthur Schwartz’s Homemade Kosher Dill Pickle Recipe

It’s nice to know I’m not the only one having wrestling with foreign languages around here. A couple of weeks ago I was buying some olives at an épicerie, and the woman, who wanted to practice her English, as she spooned olives in to a sack, reassured me; “Don’t worry. I will give you some brain with that.”

sliced pickles

Thinking maybe it was some odd French thing, but I wasn’t really keen on having someone add a few brains to my bag of olives. After a bit of mental maneuvering, I realized she was letting me know she would be adding some “brine” to my olives—not “brain”.

Which was such a relief.

saltuncooked cucumbers

Ok, so fast-forward back to last Sunday. Noting that Monday was a holiday, since I’d already bought the cukes, it dawned on me that the giant Tang Frères, Paris’ Asian supermarket, was open on Sunday. So I rushed right down there.

Of course, they’d have coarse salt.

Navigating the mobs of people, working my way through the aisles, I bought a whole bunch of things.

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In A Pickle

pickle fixin's

There are two rules that seem to be constant in my life.

One is that I, like most bakers, crave anything with salt and vinegar. I’m sure it’s working around sugar and chocolate all the time that does it to me, but nine times out of ten, if it’s salty and if it’s sour, I want it.

The second constant of my life in Paris, is that whatever I’m looking for, they’re sure to have everything around what I’m looking for. And I mean, absolutely everything—but the one and only thing that I’m specifically in dire need of.

At the end of last week’s Paris chocolate tour, I was craving pickles. Specifically the half-sour spears offered in New York delis. You know, the kind that aren’t the least bit soggy, and have that salty, sprightly refreshing crispness. So I turned to Arthur Schwartz, who’s pretty much the guy that everyone turns to nowadays for all-things Jewish. And New York-ish.

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Zuni’s Pickled Red Onion Recipe

spring onions

When I arrived in France a few years ago, I was a surprised to find that red onions are rare and cost nearly four-times the price of yellow onions. I reasoned that although French cuisine uses lots of onions, most often they’re cooked to enhance their sweetness, and they become an essential backdrop for braises, stews, and casseroles…and most-notably in French Onion Soup. So why use the red ones if they’re going to get lost?

The rose-colored onions of Roscoff, a small port village off the north coast of Brittany, which faces England, are considered a delicacy in France. Beginning back in 1828, French farmers would load up boats with these pink onions to sell them from their bicycles in England, where the farmers were affectionately dubbed “Johnnies” by the Brits.

This recipe comes from one of my favorite books, The Zuni Café Cookbook (which everyone should own). Like all of chef Judy Rodger’s recipes, this one is a winner. The onions are tangy and sweet, and keep their nice crunch. They’re perfect on hamburgers and Mexican food, as well as a nice condiment for any sandwich.

pickles.jpg

The Zuni Café’s Red Onion Pickles

Adapted from The Zuni Café Cookbook by Judy Rodgers

Judy’s recipe calls for 1 pound of red onions, peeled and sliced into rings. Make a brine with 3 cups white vinegar, 1½ cups of sugar, cinnamon stick, a few cloves, allspice berries and peppercorns. Add 2 bay leaves and a small dried chili, then bring it all to a boil in a 4-quart non-reactive saucepan.

Simmer the onion rings, in three separate batches (that means, one-third of the onion rings at a time), for 20 seconds each (20 seconds for each batch) in the brine. Remove onions to a baking sheet using a slotted spoon to drain them, and let cool.

Then you do it again, simmer the onions in three separate batches, for 20 seconds each. Drain them, and cool.

Then you do it again…simmer the onions in three separate batches (yes, have you memorized it yet?… 20 seconds each…then drain them and let them cool.)

Finally you chill the brine thoroughly. Once chilled, add the onions and store in the refrigerator.

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Homemade Kosher Dill Pickles

Cocoa Nib, Shallot and Beer Marmalade

Herbed Ricotta Tart

Pickled Red Onions