Antioxidant, Digestive, and Supplier
of Essential Minerals and Vitamins
The Pickles in Our Cuisine
Consumed during drinks, they sooth down the effect of alcohol. On our Mezza tables, they allow quick digestion for an ongoing enjoyable consumption of the large variety of food during dinner events.
The Kabiss is both digestive and an appetite opener, and we enjoy it as such!
Our Pickles differ from the North-American ones for lacking sweetness, specially with the cucumbers. They are vinegar-pungent and garlic-flavored.
The most consumed among our big happy family of pickles is the Cucumber and then the Turnip which joins its Cucumber sibling in our famous well-traveled wraps.
The Lebanese Cuisine goes even beyond pickling veggies and produces delicious pickled Labneh-Cheese Balls.
Pickles in their varieties are part of our household staples, specially in the villages where they are still being lovingly made at home. From cauliflower and carrot to garlic, cabbage, and turnips, we count dozens in the pickle variety.
The most fancy and delicious pickle of ours is the small baby eggplant that we stuff with a mixture of red pepper, coriander, pomegranate, and walnuts (or pine kernels or almonds), and are fermented in extra-virgin olive oil, known for its multi-healing values. We call it Makdous Batenjein.
Try the Cucumber Pickle with our Chicken and Turkey Pizza Wrap! Recipe will be posted on June 6th
Today, I am sharing with you the easy recipe of the Cucumber Pickle and the Turnip Pickle. I highly recommend you try as well the Stuffed Eggplant Pickle. A click on the photo above or on its name will take you right away to its recipe.
This recipe is for 1 kg of Lebanese cucumbers, which are small in size. The smaller the better for pickling so make sure you with small cucumbers. The quantity of a kilo could differ at the time of purchase.
Depending on how many the kg will get you in your supermarket, and the size of the airtight jars you have or get, consider needing enough jars for your 1 kg with the cucumbers stuck in closely. I usually fit 6 to 7 in my jar.
NOTE: The Resting Time required for the cucumbers to macerate and ferment to the right sourness is 10-15 days.
Lebanese Cucumber Pickles
- 1 Kg Cucumber (small) washed
- 1 cup White Vinager 5% acidity level
- cloves Garlic (peeled) 2 per jar
- stem Fresh Thyme (small) 1 per jar
- 1/2 tsp Coriander Grains Optional
- 1/4 cup Salt (Kosher)
- 3 cups Water
- Airtight Glass Jars sterilized
Mix water and salt over medium heat, add the coriander, and stir well until the salt dissolved. Remove, stir in the vinegar, and tet aside to rest and cool.
Using a toothpick, gently prick the cucumbers in just few places and place them vertically in the jars, stuck together, along with the stem of Thyme.
Place between the cucumbers a couple of Garlic cloves in each glass Jar. Pour in the liquid to a well saturated level, and close them tightly.
Store them in an undisturbed area of your kitchen, at cool room temperature (no sunlight) for at least 15 days. The top of your kitchen cabinets or in an upper shelf is your best bet to store the jars.
Cool the jar you intend to open in the fridge for the pickles to gain a refreshing quality. Your pickles will also taste better. Remove only the amount of pickles you intend to serve, and close back the jar tightly, and back in the fridge.
Cut the pickles horizontally in thick round slices, or lengthwise in 4 pieces each. Place them in a small serving plate, or along side the other kind of pickles you might have concocted.
The Pickles could last up to a week in your fridge once the jar is opened, and up to six months as airtight closed staple.
We don't eat the garlic cloves and the thyme stem. At this stage, they don't taste good at all and are discarded.
Lebanese Turnip Pickles
- 1 kg Turnips (peeled) cut in thick batons
- 1 Beet (small) cut in thick batons (no wrinkled or softened beet!)
- cloves Garlic (1 for each jar) peeled
- 1 cup White Vinegar
- 3 cups Water
- 1/3 cup Salt (Kosher)
- 2 Bay Leafs
- 1/2 tbsp Coriander Seeds
- 1/2 tbsp Fennel Seeds
Over medium heat, mix water and salt, add the bay leafs and seeds, and stir well until the salt is well dissolved. Set aside to cool well then stir in the vinegar.
Arrange your turnips in your airtight jars, insert the garlic clove, then distribute the beets in equal quantity in each jar.
Discard the bay leafs, and pour the liquid in the jars to a saturation level (without reaching the rim.)
Store the jars at cool room temperature (and no sunlight) in an undisturbed area for a week.
Like with the Cucumber pickles, place the jar you intend to open in the refrigerator for the turnips to chill into a refreshing quality.
Discard the garlic and seeds, and serve the pickles in a serving bowl with some of its liquid.
Once the jar is opened, the pickles can last for about a month in the fridge. Otherwise, for stapling purpose, they can last for a good six months (unopened, airtight closed.).