Chapter 18 (Stalking the Good life-Euell Gibbons)
The Dilly Crock
“Every Wild food gatherer needs a dill crock. Every gardener needs a dill crock. Everybody needs one.
And just what is a dill crock? It is a way to enjoy some of the finest food you have ever tasted. It is an “in” thing as much status value as a free- form swimming pool-but costs practically nothing. It’s the way to practice one-upmanship on a budget. It is a grand luxury that soon becomes a necessity. A dill crock is so easily mad and maintained that there is no excuse for not having one. One? After getting started on this hobby, I”ll bet you make two, or three, or maybe a half-dozen.
Naturally I got started on this tasty sport with wild food. A nearby patch of wild Jerusalem artichoke pickles. I didn’t even use a crock; I used a gallon sixed glass jar.
It was late fall, and my dill bed had long since gone to seed-so long ago, in fact, that a new volunteer crop of dill had sprung up. It wasn’t flowering, but it did have the right aroma and flavor, so I decided to use it anyway, adding a few dill seeds to make sure……
Packing a layer of dill at the bottom of the jar, I added several cloves of garlic, a few Tabasco peppers, then some peeled tubers of Jerusalem artichokes plus another layer of dill (You can use any vegetables wild or cultivated) There was room left, and I looked around for other things to add. The winter onions had great bunches of top sets, so I peeled a few and made a layer of them. Then I dug up some bottom bulbs, which are shaped like huge cloves of garlic, to make another layer. I then made a layer of cauliflower picked apart into small florets and added some sweet red pepper cut into strips, along with a handful of tow of green nasturtium seed pods.
This was all covered with brine made of one measure of salt to a half measure of vinegar and ten measures of water. I I topped the whole thing with another layers of young dill, set a small saucer on top weighted with a rock, to keep everything below the brine, and took it down in the cool cellar for a two week stay.”
Easy dilled pickles that rival NYC pickles: Stuff a jar with lengthwise sliced cucumbers regular or pickling ones add dill, fresh and seed, 4 cut up cloves of garlic and use the above recipe for the brine. Easy and delishish. I let sit in the fridge for a week to cure. Too salty? Pour off a little brine and add water , let sit and check again. Easy