Mark’s Kosher Pickles, the Right Way

Makes: About 60 pickle quarters or 30 halves

Time: 1 to 2 days 

From Mark’s headnote: “No vinegar here, so these don’t keep for very long (about a week), but they’ll be eaten quickly enough that you’ll never see one go bad. These are my favorite pickles and those of everyone for whom I’ve made them too.” All true of course, but if you miss your vinegar, you can always add it to the brine after curing or sprinkle a few drops on the pickles directly right before eating. That gives you better control over the acidity anyway. 

  • 1/3 cup kosher salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 pounds Kirby cucumbers, washed (scrub if spiny) and halved or quartered lengthwise
  • At least 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 large bunch fresh dill, preferably with flowers, or 2 tablespoons dried dill and 1 teaspoon dill seeds, or 1 tablespoon coriander seeds 

1. Combine the salt and boiling water in a large bowl; stir to dissolve the salt. Add a handful of ice cubes to cool the mixture, then add all the remaining ingredients. 

2. Add cold water to cover. Use a plate slightly smaller than the diameter of the bowl and a small weight to keep the cucumbers immersed. Set aside at room temperature. 

3. Begin sampling the cucumbers after 4 hours if you’ve quartered them, 8 hours if you’ve halved them. In either case, it will probably take from 12 to 24 or even 48 hours for them to taste pickly enough to suit your taste. 

4. When they are ready, refrigerate them, still in the brine. The pickles will continue to ferment as they sit, more quickly at room temperature, more slowly in the refrigerator. They will keep well for up to a week.

cucumber, celery, & sweet onion salad with sour cream dressing


  • 3 tbsp. sour cream
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. chopped fresh dill, plus more for serving
  • Pinch sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 English cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • 4 stalks celery, thinly sliced, plus 1/4 c. celery leaves
  • 1 small sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced


  1. Whisk together sour cream, oil, lemon juice, dill, and sugar in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add cucumber, celery and leaves, and onion and toss to combine.
  2. Serve topped with dill.

cabbage, cucumber and fennel salad with dill


  • 1 1/4 pounds Savoy cabbage, very thinly sliced on a mandoline (6 cups)
  • 1 medium sweet onion, very thinly sliced on a mandoline
  • 1 1/2 pounds fennel bulbs—halved, cored and very thinly shaved on a mandoline
  • Ice water
  • 1 seedless cucumber, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup crème fraîche
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup chopped dill
  • 3 tablespoons poppy seeds

how to make this recipe

  1. Put the cabbage, onion and fennel in three separate bowls and cover with ice water; let stand for 30 minutes. Drain the vegetables and spin dry in a salad spinner. In another bowl, toss the cucumbers with 2 teaspoons of salt and cover with ice water. Let stand for 30 minutes, then drain and pat dry.
  2. In a very large bowl, whisk the crème fraîche with the vinegar until stiff. Add the dill and poppy seeds and season generously with salt. Fold in the cabbage, onion, fennel and cucumber and serve right away.


Make quick pickles!


  • 1/2 cup white vinegar, eyeball it
  • 2 rounded teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 clove cracked garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill or 2 tablespoons fresh dill leaves, chopped or snipped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 kirby cucumbers, cut into 1-inch slices on an angle


  1. Heat small saucepan over medium high heat. Add vinegar, sugar, mustard seed, salt, and garlic to the pan and cook until it begins to simmer and sugar dissolves. Toss the dill, bay leaf, and sliced cucumbers together in a heat-proof bowl. Pour the simmering liquid over the cucumbers and stir to evenly coat. Allow to cool to room temperature or chill before serving.

Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray

Read more at:

Carrot, Cucumber and Glass Noodle Salad

Recipe type: Salad

Cuisine: Chinese

Serves: 2-4 servings


  • 3 cups water
  • 2 oz glass noodles
  • 2 medium size carrots (approximately 5 oz)
  • ½ medium size cucumber (approximately 7 oz)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp crushed chili pepper
  • (optional) ½ tsp Sichuan red pepper corn powder
  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • 1-1/2 tbs canola oil
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp soy sauce (gluten-free if desired)
  • 1 tbs apple cider vinegar


  1. Use mandolin or a sharp knife to cut carrots and cucumber into approximately ⅛” x 2-1/2” strips. Set aside.
  2. Heat water in a saucepan. After the water is boiling, add glass noodles, and boil for an additional minute. Add carrots strips and boil for another 1 minute. Turn off heat, and let the carrots and glass noodles soak in the hot water for another 2 minutes.
  3. Transfer the glass noodles and carrots into a colander and rinse with cold water thoroughly. Set aside.
  4. Heat a skillet over high heat until it is smoky hot. Carefully add canola oil to the skillet and let the heat transfer to the oil (approximately 30 seconds). Place the cooked glass noodles, carrots, and cucumber into a mixing bowl. Place the pepper, garlic, and green onions on top. When the canola oil is smoky hot, remove the skillet from heat and carefully pour the hot oil over the spices.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients and gently toss. Serve cold.

Cucumber-Zucchini Soup

Ian Knauer, The Farm Cooking School

Serves 6

  • 1 pound zucchini, chopped
  • 3/4 pound cucumbers, peeled
  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 small fresh green chile
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Zucchini flowers for garnish 
  1. Puree the zucchini, cucumbers, onion, vinegar, water, chile, coriander, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a blender unto very smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste, the serve topped with the torn zucchini flowers.

cold cucumber soup


  • 3 leeks, washed and sliced in rounds
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 cups milk
  • 6 cucumbers, peeled, sliced, and seeded
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped green onion or chive
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • plain low-fat** yogurt, or low-fat** sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons capers


  1. Cook the leeks in the stock in a large soup pot for 10 minutes. Add the milk and cucumbers.
  2. Pour small batches at a time into a blender and purée until smooth. Add the dill, lemon juice, green onions or chives, salt, and pepper. Stir once or twice.
  3. Chill covered in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
  4. Pour 1-cup servings into each of 6 bowls, garnish with a dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream, and sprinkle a few capers on top.

Long Bean, Cucumber, and Tomato Salad

Makes 4 servings

Thai salads are full of crisp vegetables and fruits mixed with intense condiments. "It's not about just tossing the ingredients together," says Ricker. "It's about working them into the dressing," which can also be used to dress green-papaya and cabbage slaws.


  • 2 dried Thai chiles, soaked for 2 minutes in warm water, drained
  • 3 small garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/4 lime, cut into 3 wedges
  • 1 tablespoon palm sugar or granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon dried tiny shrimp
  • 9 long beans (2 1/2 ounces) or green beans, trimmed, cut into 2 1/2" lengths
  • 2 kirby cucumbers or 1 English hothouse cucumber, coarsely chopped into 1" pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons crushed roasted, unsalted peanuts


  1. Place first 4 ingredients in a clay mortar and pound with a wooden pestle until mashed into a fine paste, about 5 minutes. Add shrimp; mash until pulverized and well combined, about 2 minutes. (Alternatively, process in a mini-processor until finely chopped.)
  2. Add long beans to mortar; lightly crush with pestle to bruise. Add cucumber pieces, fish sauce, and lime juice. Mix well. Add tomatoes, lightly crush, and mix in. (Alternatively, place beans and tomatoes in a resealable plastic bag. Roll a rolling pin over bag to bruise vegetables; transfer to a bowl with the cucumber, fish sauce, lime juice, and chile dressing.) Let marinate for 10 minutes. Stir in peanuts.

Grilled Cucumbers with Creamy Pickled Feta Dip

Recipe type: Appetizer, Gluten Free


Grilled Cucumbers:

  • About 10 baby or kirby cucumbers
  • ⅓ Cup red wine vinegar
  • ⅓ Cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 pinch of salt

Pickled Feta Dip:

  • 6 oz plain greek non-fat yogurt, or 1 small container
  • ½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dill
  • ⅓ cup distilled white vinegar, or white wine vinegar
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 1½ teaspoon sugar
  • A little less than 1 tablespoon salt


Pickled Feta Dip:

  1. In a jar or small bowl, combine the vinegar, water, salt, and sugar. Mix until salt and sugar are dissolved.
  2. Add the feta in and let sit for at least 30 minutes. Once feta is finished pickling, drain the juice and set the feta aside.
  3. In a food processor or blender, add the yogurt, dill, garlic, and feta cheese. Blend until mixture is creamy.

Grilled Cucumbers:

  1. Cut the cucumbers in half, lengthwise, and then in half again.
  2. In a large bowl add the vinegar, olive oil, garlic, and salt and stir. Add in the cucumbers and toss to coat. Let marinate for about 10 - 15 minutes.
  3. Turn the grill on medium heat and place cucumbers on. Grill for about 10 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  4. Dip grilled cucumbers into the pickled feta dip and enjoy!

*Grilled Cucumber recipe adapted from Food & Wine Magazine.

*Pickling mixture for pickled feta adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

Cucumber Soup


  • 6 pounds cucumbers (about 6 cucumbers), peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped (12 cups)
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, stem and seeds removed, coarsely chopped
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, minced
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, mashed to a paste with 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons Essence, recipe follows
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 cups plain yogurt
  • 3 cups sour cream, divided
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives


  1. Combine the cucumbers, bell peppers, green onions, jalapenos, cilantro, mint, dill, garlic, Essence, salt, cayenne, yogurt, 2 cups sour cream, olive oil, and white wine vinegar in a large bowl. Working in batches, puree the ingredients in a blender until very smooth. Transfer the soup to the refrigerator until well chilled, at least 2 hours. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve the soup, with each bowl garnished with a dollop of the remaining sour cream and some of the minced chives.

Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  1. Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

Yield: 2/3 cup

Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch, published by William and Morrow, 1993.

Read more at:


Cucumber, Dill and Onion Salad

  • 1/4 cup white-wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2cucumbers, peeled and cut in half lengthwise, sliced into half moons
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill                   


  1. In the bottom of a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sugar, and salt. Toss in the cucumbers, red onions, and fresh dill. Cover and chill for at least 15 minutes.