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Pickled Cucumbers and Onions

Pickled cucumbers are like no other. They stay crisp and slightly crunchy even up to a week in the refrigerator. The secret is the sauce. To make this healthy recipe at home, you’ll need a piece of cheesecloth.

Yield: 8 cups

Ingredients:

For the sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons pickling spices
  • 3 large cloves garlic, peeled and halved
  • Cheesecloth
  • 4 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the cucumbers and onions:

  • 4 large cucumbers, ends trimmed
  • 2 extra-large white onions
  • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh dill
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Instructions:

1. To make the sauce, place the pickling spices and garlic in the center of a square of cheesecloth and tie into a bag with cotton string. Place in a large saucepan with 3 cups of the vinegar, the sugar, water and 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a full boil over high heat. Boil, uncovered, for 10 minutes, making sure the sugar dissolves entirely. Stir in the remaining 1 cup vinegar, remove from the heat, fish out the spice bag, and discard. Taste the sauce and add a little more vinegar if you wish.

2. While the sauce boils, cut the prepped cucumbers into a quarter inch think slices on the diagonal. Use a sharp slicing knife with a smooth edge. Place in a large bowl.

3. Peel the onions and cut vertically in half. Place on a cutting board, flat side down, and slice into a quarter inch think half-moons. Blanch the onions in boiling water for 1 to 2 minutes, strain, rinse under cold water, and drain. Add to the cucumbers, sprinkle all with the dill and the 2 teaspoons of salt, and toss to coat.

4. Pour the hot sauce over the cucumbers and onions, and let the salad stand for 1 hour at room temperature until wilted. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled or overnight. Any leftovers keep well in the refrigerator, tightly covered, for up to 1 week.

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