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Gin Pickled Cucumbers

These are a staple on Alex’s Christmas lunch table. Make a few jars and give them as gifts. On the big day eat them with cured fish and oysters, or ham sandwiches and cheese plates.

Makes 2 x 300 ml jars

Ingredients

500g of cucumbers 

2 teaspoons of salt 

plus and extra 1.5 teaspoons salt

½ teaspoon juniper berries – slightly crushed 

1 whole lemon peeled 

250ml gin 

125ml white wine vinegar 

125ml water 

1/4 cup of caster sugar

Method

Slice the cucumbers into 20 cent piece rounds . Put into a non–reactive bowl and sprinkle with salt, then mix with your hands to evenly disperse.  Let sit for 2 hours – up to overnight to draw any excess moisture out. Then strain and discard the excess liquid. 

To make your brine by combine vinegar, water, sugar and 1.5 teaspoons of salt into a saucepan and place over a low heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar and salt and bring to simmering point. Turn off the heat and add in the lemon peel and the juniper and let sit for 15-20 minutes, until the brine has cooled down and the flavours have infused. Once cool, add in the gin and stir well. 

Gently pack cucumbers into clean jars. Pour over the brine making sure the lemon and juniper berries are evenly dispersed between all 4 jars and the cucumbers are completely submerged under the liquid. Remove air bubbles and seal. 

Store in the fridge and let them sit for at least 3 days before consuming. Eat within 3 months.