August 5, 2012
A friend introduced me to some amazing gourmet pickles: Hop-Pickle by Brooklyn Brine and Smokra by Rick's Picks. Both had a kick to them and a twist of sophistication. Honestly, I was going to take a year off from canning, but these pickles were sooooo good that I had to attempt making them. I will certainly share the recipes if my versions are even half as good as the professionals'.
The Hop-Pickle has cucumber chunks stewed in Dogfish Head's 60 Minute IPA, apple cider vinegar, water, habanero, caramelized onion (onion, maple syrup, bourbon, etc), garlic, dill, spices, and smoked paprika. For my own version of these pickles, I substituted the Dogfish head with Upslope's IPA, a beer from Boulder.
The Smokra has okra stewed in apple cider vinegar, water, garlic, salt, smoked paprika, curry powder, mustard seed, chili flakes, dried chili peppers, cayenne pepper.
And because I was already canning and I had a pile of green beans, I made dilly beans as well. Never know when you'll need to make a bloody mary!