Gherkin

Gherkin

Cornichon

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery
Makes
1 kg

Gherkins, or cornichons (‘little horns’), are very small cucumbers which are grown for pickling. The best are about 3 cm long. Serve pickled gherkins with hot boiled beef, corned beef or frankfurts, or with cold meats and cheese. They are also part of the flavouring for tartare, gribiche and rémoulade sauces.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1kg firm fresh gherkins
290g salt
1 litre water
1 tablespoon cloves
1 tablespoon white peppercorns
1 tablespoon blade mace
1 tablespoon whole allspice
1 x 8 cm stick cinnamon
2 slices fresh ginger
1 litre white vinegar
grape leaves, (optional)

Method

  1. Place gherkins in a large bowl. Dissolve salt in water and pour over gherkins. Cover and leave for 3 days.
  2. Meanwhile, tie spices and flavourings in a muslin (cheesecloth) bag, place in vinegar and bring to the boil. Cool, with spice bag in vinegar, for 2 hours, then remove bag. After 3 days, drain, rinse and dry gherkins. Pack them into sterilised wide-mouthed jars.
  3. Bring vinegar to the boil, pour over gherkins, cover tightly and leave for about 24 hours. Pour off vinegar into a saucepan, bring to the boil again, pour over gherkins and leave as before. Repeat this process once more.
  4. Add a few grape leaves to each sterilised jar, if desired, to help keep gherkins crisp. Cover tightly and leave 6 weeks. Gherkins keep for 12 months in a cool, dark place. Once opened, store in refrigerator.
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