July 18, 2015 - 12:20 PM / 12:35 PM

This demonstration will be led by Miriam Rubin SLOW FOOD PITTSBURGH.

MIRIAM RUBIN is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Miriam was the first woman to work in the kitchens of NYC’s famed Four Seasons Restaurant. She’s the former food editor of Weight Watchers Magazine and her first cookbook, Grains, was published in 1995. She writes a food and garden column “Miriam’s Garden” for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and contributes to their food pages. Her work has appeared in Organic Gardening, Prevention, Redbook, Working Woman, Working Mother and Woman’s Day. She was line-editor for the Encyclopedia of Jewish Food and contributed to The Encyclopedia of Appalachia and The Oxford Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink Vol. 2. Her latest book is Tomatoes, part of the Savor the South series published by the University of North Carolina Press.
Grandma Rubins Kosher Dills

If there’s no dill in your garden, substitute a tablespoon of dill seed.

  • 2 1/2 to 3 pounds small pickling cucumbers, well scrubbed
  • 8 cups water
  • ½ cup cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons pickling spice (Grandma always removed the excess allspice and cloves)
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 6 to 8 cloves garlic, peeled, brown ends trimmed
  • 2 small fresh or dried chiles, plus more for jars
  • 6 to 8 heads dill

Place cucumbers in large bowl. Cover with ice water and refrigerate 1 hour until icy-cold and crisp. Drain.

In 2-quart measuring cup, measure water. Add vinegar, salt, pickling spice and peppercorns. Stir to dissolve salt.

Put cucumbers in pickling crock or deep glass or ceramic bowl. Add garlic and 2 chiles. Pour in brine and stir to mix. Place dill on top, pressing into brine.

Place a clean, unchipped small plate on top. Press down gently to submerge cucumbers. Cover with a clean towel. Let stand at cool room temperature 2 days for new dills, 3 to 4 days for old dills.

Pack pickles into 4 or 5 clean pint jars. Add a garlic clove from brine and a chile to each. Ladle brine into jars, covering pickles. Discard dill and remaining brine. Cover jars and refrigerate. Pickles are ready now but will keep 2 to 3 months. Brine may become cloudy; that’s okay.

Makes 4 or 5 pints