For the brine:
- 10 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 6 teaspoons kosher salt
- Several sprigs of fresh dill
- 1 teaspoon celery seed
- 1 teaspoon coriander seed
- 1 teaspoon mustard seed
- 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon pink peppercorns (if you have 'em)
For the vegetables:
- 6 Kirby cucumbers, quartered lengthwise
- 6 young spring carrots, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
- 1 handful large scallion pieces or green beans
- A few pieces of cauliflower to tuck wherever they'll fit
- 4 small hot red chiles or 2 jalapenos
In a medium saucepan, bring 4 cups water to a boil, reduce the heat so the water simmers and add the garlic. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and salt, raise the heat and bring to a boil, stirring until the salt dissolves. Remove from the heat.
In 2 clear 1-quart jars, place a few sprigs of dill. Divide the seeds and peppercorns between the jars. Using tongs, remove the garlic from the brine and place 5 cloves in each jar. Then pack the jars full of cucumbers, carrots, scallions or green beans, cauliflower and chiles. You want them to be tightly stuffed.
Bring the brine back to a boil, pour it over the vegetables to cover completely, let cool, then cover and refrigerate. The pickles will taste good in just a few hours, better after a couple of days. And they'll keep for about 3 months.
Photograph by Kat Teutsch