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Sunday, 13 July 2014

PICKLED CUCUMBERS WITH OLIVE OIL

Good Afternoon to you,


I have to tell you, there is a new diva in this house.

..... and the diva is in the kitchen..... no I am not talking about myself, I am talking about George.

George has decided that after all these years, he would like to learn to cook... but  he never cooks... he enjoys eating, but has never shown any interest in cooking, well apart from the times he cooked using an open fire.

.... but now, he has decided he would like to learn to cook using a conventional cooker.

... and he has requirements.

He has asked for his own apron..... which is fine, but the apron has to have certain additions.  He would like a circular loop attached to the apron, so he can tuck a tea towel into the loop, and when I asked why he wanted to use a tea towel, he said because he had seen chefs on the television use them and he felt it would be a useful item. I think this is strange as I have never felt the need to use one.

I have also been told, he will not be calling it a pinnie as the word pinnie does not sit well with him.

Oh yes and the apron must have a large pocket in the front.... not sure why, but this is what he wants.

So in the near future, under his strictest of guidelines,  I will be making an apron for him.

So while he is waiting for his apron, he is using my older butchers pinnie.... oops, sorry, apron.  The first meal on his list, is his favourite.... a Sunday breakfast.

So with his first Sunday breakfast under his belt, the diva has emerged.  I  have to sing his praises, not once, not twice but with every mouthful of food I eat.  I have to tell him how wonderful the food is, how it tastes and yes, that I am really enjoying it. I have to listen to how each part of the breakfast was made...... I can't help but wonder if he has forgotten that it was me who taught him how to make the breakfast in the first place, but somehow I think he has forgotten that little fact.

Now, I really don't mind teaching George how to cook, but my concern is, what will he want to learn to cook next.....I am hoping it will be nothing too involved, but I have a feeling it will be.  I am really hoping that this is  a 'flash in the pan' (sorry about the pun). If not, I think I have  a really interesting time ahead of me.... mmm, I wonder if I can divert him with some woodwork?

So the breakfast, has been eaten.... and duly praised. The dishes have been washed and put away and George is reading the newspaper, so whilst all is quiet,  I have decided to make,


some pickled cucumbers with olive oil.  They are lovely eaten with bread and cheese or mixed into a salad and they can be stored for a year.... but that never happens in this house as once the storage time has past by, they are usually eaten, by George, within three months.  I do not make a lot of pickled cucumbers, but enough to fill a 1 kilo kilner jar.

So it's on with the pinnie and the music I have chosen to listen to is,


Lionel Richie.  Natasha asked me once who I would like to see in concert and my answer was Barry Manilow and Lionel Richie.  I love 'All Night Long', 'Dancing on the Ceiling' and 'Hello'. To be honest, when it comes to Lionel, the list of songs I enjoy listening to are endless.

So whilst I am listening to 'Sail On', I will organise my ingredients.

Before we start, I wanted to let you know, that this is a two day process.  One day to soak the cucumbers and onions and the second day to complete the pickling.

INGREDIENTS

750g cucumbers
(approximately 2 large cucumbers)
625g onions
75g sea salt
500ml cider vinegar
80ml water
1 teaspoon crushed coriander seeds
1 teaspoon of whole black peppercorns
4 dried bay leaves
10 very small dried chilli peppers
75ml olive oil

1 kg kilner jar 
(sterilized in your normal way)

HOW TO MAKE
PICKLED CUCUMBERS
WITH
OLIVE OIL

THE FIRST DAY


Top and tail  two cucumbers
and 
finely slice.


Remove the skin
and 
finely slice
the onions


Place the finely sliced cucumbers

and


the
finely sliced onions


in a large bowl
and
cover with water.


Add the sea salt
and stir.


Cover the bowl with a plate
to make sure the cucumbers
and onions stay submerged.
Then cover with a tea towel.

Leave over night.

THE SECOND DAY


Place the cider vinegar,


the bay leaves,


the
crushed coriander seeds,
the
black peppercorns,


the dried red chillies

and


the 
water
into a non-corrosive saucepan.
Bring to the boil
and simmer for 10 minutes

Whilst the cider vinegar is simmering,


drain the cucumbers and onions.
Rinse in cold water
then


using a colander, 
remove as much liquid as possible.


Ladle the cucumbers and onions
into a sterilized kilner jar.

Once the cider vinegar 
has simmered,
allow to
stand for 10 minutes
then


whisk in the olive oil


and ladle the
vinegar into the kilner jar.

When the cucumbers and onions
are covered, seal the jar
and place in a cool cupboard for 
at least 3 weeks.

The reason I have made these pickled cucumbers today is I was gifted a couple of cucumbers.  George and I would not have been able to eat both of them, so I decided to pickle them instead, as this way, the cucumbers will last much longer.

Oh and just before I go, I have been talking to George about some birdhouses and bug houses which I would like him to make..... and yes, he is going to make some for the garden.  Phew, that was a narrow escape.

Take care and I will see you on Wednesday.

This week I will be joining,

and






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