Friday, June 12, 2009

How to use fresh herbs: dill

Dill is so lacy and green. It is nice to have in your garden just to see the lush color, but when you start harvesting cucumbers, you really begin to see dill's true purpose. I have made pickles with dried herbs but fresh herbs really enhance the taste of the pickles. Our cucumbers are just beginning to be large enough to harvest and the first thing I had to do was make some quick pickles.

The recipe I am including is for Quick Refrigerator Dills. It is easy and a good alternative to actually canning them. It doesn't matter if they are cut into rounds or spears. Just wash the cucumbers well and allow them to dry. You can make them in a sealed container of any kind. I like to re purpose my jars so if this looks like an old pasta sauce jar, you are right. I washed and cleaned the jar, saving it for a time like this.

I filled the jar with sliced cucumbers, and then added two stalks of dill and a clove of sliced garlic. I added a teaspoon of salt on top of the cucumbers and then filled the jar 2/3 full with white vinegar. I filled the rest with cold water and stored them in my refrigerator. These pickles won't last as long as if they were canned, but they are very good and would last for a couple of weeks in the refrigerator.

You can also use dill for other savory dishes, including a sauce for lamb and in potato salad. I really don't use dill as often as I should but maybe I will find some other uses for it this summer. If you have any good recipes, please send them to me.


  1. I have never heard of "quick" pickles! This is awesome and I will be trying it!

  2. You had me at Garlic. On my way to the kitchen with this recipe in hand. Thanks!

  3. Here is a fresh cucumber salad recipe using dill:

    Slice cucumbers very thin into a bowl (if the cucumber is very fresh you can leave the skin on it). Salt generously, mixing salt into the cucumbers. Let it stand about an hour. Squeeze the liquid and seeds from the cucumbers (just tilt the bowl and squeeze the cucumbers, letting the liquid and seeds run over the edge). Add finely chopped garlic, a touch of white vinegar, freshly chopped dill, and sour cream. Stir it together. Sprinkle paprika on top and refrigerate until time for dinner. It's very refreshing, but best eaten the same day.