Now that you’ve learned how to create a brine and spice mixture to pickle a variety of produce, it’s time to try the best ones! You can experiment with a variety of foods — including meat! For now, we’ll stick to the most popular types of produce you can pickle, as well as offer some suggestions for spice mixes to create a more unique flavor.
For a first-hand experience of delicious pickled dishes, visit your local restaurant, Big Island BBQ, in Liberty Lake.
Cabbage is one of the most versatile vegetables you can pickle because it can be used in a variety of popular pickled dishes. You can make sauerkraut by fermenting cabbage with greater amounts of salt, kimchi by adding hot spices to your brine, or a sweet pickled coleslaw with more sugar.
Tip: Check out your local restaurant serving island-style food, like Big Island BBQ, for different kimchi dishes and cabbage-pickling inspiration.
Carrots are another great vegetable to pickle. They’re often pickled with sugar and spices, but you can create a mixture of vegetables by adding onions, peppers, and cauliflower.
Perhaps one of the most popular vegetables to pickle, cucumbers can be fermented with different spices and vegetables to create different flavors. Do you like bread-and-butter pickles? Add sliced onions and bell peppers to your brine. You can also make your pickles spicy by using hot peppers.
It may seem surprising that pickled fruit could make a delicious addition to a dish, but with the right spice mixture, they’ll be sweet and flavorful in just a few days. Add cinnamon and black pepper to your grapes to create a spicy dessert topping.
Peaches make a delicious pickled snack when fermented in the right brine mixture. Start by blanching the peaches to remove the skin. Let them cool, then slice them up, and add them to a brine of vinegar, water, sugar, cloves, and cinnamon.
Pears are another great fruit to pickle. Their tangy taste is amplified by the fermentation process, making them a delicious addition to an arugula salad. Create a spice mixture using cloves and cinnamon as well for a spicy tang.
The best peppers to pickle are those that are brightly colored and have thick flesh. Look for Hungarian, Cubanelle, yellow wax, sweet bell, sweet banana, and sweet cherry peppers. Peppers can be added to other vegetable brines to flavor them or they can be pickled by themselves.
Tip: If you’re pickling your peppers whole, remember to cut slits in the side so the brine can pickle the inside of the pepper as well.
For a Pacific-island inspired stir fry, pickle pineapple and add it to your dish. The brine for this is more unique than most, combining lime juice and fish sauce instead of water and vinegar, with sriracha and garlic for additional flavor.
Tomatoes make great pickled fruits because you can pickle them while they’re still green and unripe. Tomatoes are versatile and can be pickled with a lot of different brine solutions. Choose anything from sweet to salty to spicy mixes to give your pickled tomatoes some serious flavor.
Instead of throwing away your watermelon rinds after enjoying their tasty center, save them to pickle. Soak the rinds overnight and then ferment them. They take on a sweet and savory flavor, making them a great addition to meats like pan-seared pork chops.
The options are truly endless when it comes to pickling different produce. If you find one fruit, vegetable, or meat in particular that you really enjoy pickled, try mixing up the spices to create a variety of delectable dishes. For more inspiration, visit Big Island BBQ in Liberty Lake, your local restaurant serving island-style food and surprisingly delicious pickled dishes.