Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Pickled Grilled Vegetables – Now, Why Didn't I Think of That?

This pickled grilled vegetables technique was my favorite new discovery on the Kingsford University trip. It's quite a simple, and seemingly obvious trick, yet it never occurred to me. It's times like these when I'm faced with the tragic realization that I'm not as smart and creative as I think I am.

Basically, small pickling cucumbers (which I've always called, "pickles," even if they aren’t pickled yet, just to be confusing), as well as other firm vegetables, are seared briefly over very hot charcoal, before being packed in the sweet and sour pickling liquid.

The grilling imparts a subtle smokiness, as well as a little extra sweetness from the caramelization of the vegetables. I can see these being a regular fixture on the picnic table during the upcoming grilling season. What a perfect compliment to a platter of barbecued pork, or grilled chicken.

These tasted great after just one day, and even better after three. Please don't ask me how long they will last in the fridge, as I believe they should be eaten before that would become any kind of issue. I hope you give it a try, and be sure to tell me all the fabulous ways you flavored your pickling liquid. Enjoy!



Ingredients:
(Adapted from a recipe by Chris Lilly)
6 pickling cucumbers
1 red bell pepper
1 cup sugar
1 cup white vinegar
1 cup water
2 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, or to taste
big pinch of red chili flakes
12 black peppercorns
2 cloves garlic
1/4 teaspoon dried dill

View the complete recipe

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sounds great. Can't wait until summer!

Jen said...

Yuuuuuum. This I can do. (Love your videos, John!)

Ritsin said...

Baby carrots are also good and easy to pickle the same way.

Cheri Witmer said...

Looks wonderful! I love pickles so I will definately have to try this out soon!

Kitchen Comments

Anonymous said...

Do this end up tasting like a smoky sweet pickle, bread&butter pickle, garlic pickle, or something else?

Jim

Chef John said...

Sort of ;-) You'll have to try!

Karen @ My Pantry Shelf said...

Wow, I practically live on grilled vegetables and pickles in the summer. Who knew I could have both at once? Thanks for the tip.

marinac said...

Vegetable rules :) cant w8 fresh vegetable from my garden

Chris K. said...

Oooooh, I am SO doing this with asparagus! Ramps should be available soon too...

Quick reminder: this is the time of year when CSA (community supported agriculture) growers are offering shares. Check your local listings and JOIN!

Yi @ Yi Reservation said...

This is great thanks for sharing. I never thought of pickling grilled vegetables.

How long does this keep?

Chef John said...

Thanks! Please see last paragraph.

philogaia said...

Chris K: Aaaasparagus? Oh yes. My all time favorite grilled vegetable so why I didn't immediately go there is a mystery to me. It will be the first grilling veg of the season so likely my first go at this recipe as well. Thanks.

And thanks to you, Chef, for another great idea. I love making my own pickles. I'm having way too much fun getting new ideas on your site.

Anonymous said...

Doing this tomorrow with fresh asparagus (in one jar) and cabbage (in the other jar)

Oregon Sue said...

Ohhhhh I can't wait to try this! Thakns so much. So many vegetables, so little time!
Sue

cb said...

Nice! I haven't made pickles since I was a kid with my grandma. This brings back memories. Don't forget you can re-use most pickle brining liquids as a base for future pickles.

Grams Pam said...

Update on asparagus and cabbage trial

OMG! SOooo good! No one should worry about how long these grilled/pickles will "keep" because the answer is:
They won't! They'll be gone before spoiling becomes an issue.

I live alone and ate just less than half a jar of each, in one sitting!

Chris said...

This was one of my favorite recipes from KU too, along with the grilled corn. I hope that doesn't mean I'm turning vegetarian....

Sarah said...

This is a fantastic idea, so simple. Going to try this with some baby cucumbers and eggplant strips.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone tried actually canning these pickles? If someone has, would you please email me the recipe? (wolfbytez@aol.com) Boiling water bath or pressure? How long? I know that they won't last long enough to go bad in the fridge BUT...what if we want to eat them when there is snow on the ground and it's just too cold to light up the BBQ?

Offshore_Guy said...

Hi, y'all. I do a version similar to this, but I prefer a lot less sugar; maybe a Tbsp. Also, I put half a jalapeño in the jar, tambien. If you go ahead and char the pepper, it makes it much more mild. Consider adding cilantro aa pinch of cumin; sorta like a pickled pico de gallo.

cookinmom said...

Can I do this with grilled zucchini and yellow squash?

Chef John said...

I don't see why not!