Author Topic: Ukraine - Nizhyn Pickled Gherkins (Nizhyn Marynovany Ohirochky (Kornishon--cornichons)  (Read 124 times)

Olga Drozd

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Ukraine - Nizhyn Pickled Gherkins (Nizhyn Marynovany Ohirochky (Kornishon)

Nizhyn is a city found in Chernihiv Ukraine, and is 130 km from Kyiv, one of most ancient cities in Ukraine.  Nizhyn is known for its tasty pickles. There is even a monument dedicated to Nizhyn pickles on one of the city streets.

These tiny gherkins can be served as a side dish to accompany cold cuts, meat entrees, fish, and potatoes, but they are their best as an hor d'oeuvre.

4 to 5 dozen gherkins (2 to 2 1/2 inches long, and a maximum of 1 inch in diameter)
8 cups tarragon vinegar
2 1/2 Tablespoons pickling salt (or non-iodized salt)
Celery root (Celeriac) (2 inches square and 3 inches thick, with stalks and leaves, OR 4 to 5 celery stalks with leaves
1 large or 2 medium parsley roots, with stalks and leaves
2 sprigs tarragon
1 seeded red bell pepper, halved

Prepare wide mouthed (1 gallon) sterilized bottle with lid or a stoneware crock--washed and dried.
A Saucer: You'll need a saucer or a round wooden board slightly smaller than the diameter of the jar opening to "ride" on top of the pickles.
A Weight:  This will be placed on top of the saucer or board in order to keep the pickles submerged in the liquid.  A coffee can with a tight lid is a good choice because you can fill it with water for extra weight and reduce the amount of water when a lighter weight is needed.
Several Layers of Cheesecloth:  This is placed over the mouth of the jar, or over the weight to protect the pickles.  The cheesecloth is secured around the jar with string.

Prepare the gherkins.  Soak cucumbers in ice water, and enough ice to keep them cold for 3 to 4 hours.  Drain the cucumbers and trim both ends so that the brine will more easily penetrate the flesh.

Bring the vinegar to a boil.  Remove from the heat, add the salt, and stir until it dissolves (see Note).  Allow to cool.

Cut the celery and parsley roots from the stalks.  Reserve the leaves.  Wash and slice the roots 1/2 inch thick.  Wrap each red pepper half with the reserved leaves.

Arrange 1/4 of the vegetables, 1 sprig of tarragon, and a pepper package on the bottom of the jar.  Make 3 layers of gherkins over the vegetables.  Continue layering the vegetables and gherkins until all are used up, finishing with a layer of vegetables, the remaining sprig of tarragon, and the second pepper package.

Pour the cooled brined vinegar into the jar with the gherkins and vegetables, put on the lid, and be sure that the gherkins are submerged.  Leave at room temperature,  The next day, check to see if the level of the marinade has dropped; if it has, add more marinade.  Seal and refrigerate for 3 to 4 weeks before using.  The gherkins will keep for up to 3 months after they are ready; if they remain sealed.  Once they have been opened, check for scum and remove it as it forms.  Makes 1 gallon of gherkins.

NOTE: The percentage of salt in this vinegar brine is 2.7 to 3 percent.

HOMEMADE TARRAGON VINEGAR:

Here is a recipe you can make if you can't find tarragon vinegar at the grocery store.

8 cups white wine vinegar
4 cups or more sprigs of tarragon
Sterilized jars or bottles and cover (non-metal cover is preferable)

Sterilize jars in a pot of boiling water for 10 minutes and let dry.
Rinse the tarragon and remove any dead leaves. Pat dry and place in the jar stems and all.
Gently bruise the herbs using the end of a wooden spoon in the jar.
Pour the vinegar over the top of the herbs until covered.
Let steep in a cool dark place for 1 to 2 weeks until tarragon is infused into the vinegar. When the flavor is just right, strain the vinegar, fill the clean, sterilized jars or bottles, cap them tightly, and label them.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 11:36:43 AM by Olga Drozd »