Drizzle 2 tablespoons of honey, maple syrup, or sugar into the jar. If you’re using a stronger vinegar, go ahead and add an extra spoonful of sweetness for balance. Season your vegetables with salt and pepper. Top with enough water that the vegetables are submerged, screw on the lid, shake well, and you’re all done. Place your pickles in the refrigerator and let the fermentation magic happen. Light veggies, like cauliflower florets, will be ready to enjoy the next day. Denser veggies will become crisp-tender after 3-5 days. Your pickles will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks, although mine have been known to disappear in a day.
Cauliflower pickles two ways: with saffron and coriander seeds (left) and red onion and black peppercorns (right). CONTRIBUTED BY KELLIE HYNES
Once you get the hang of pickling, experiment by adding different herbs and aromatics. Fresh dill is a no-brainer. Cloves add warm, spicy undertones, and work particularly well with pickled fennel or sweet potatoes. Ginger adds a kick to carrots and mushrooms. Turmeric and saffron give warm notes, and a golden hue, to cauliflower and summer squash. When it comes to refrigerator pickles, the only hard part is deciding what to pickle next.
Other recommended flavor combinations:
Asparagus + garlic + mustard seeds
Beets + basil + fresh ginger
Baby carrots + dill + coriander
Cauliflower + cumin + saffron
Green beans + red pepper + tarragon
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