Chipotle Pickled Cucumber (Pepinos Encurtidos con Chile Chipotle)

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Chipotle Pickled Cucumber (Pepinos Encurtidos con Chile Chipotle)

Oh, these pickles! Chipotle Pickled Cucumbers. Pickles, cucumbers; both seem like silly names for such delicious foods. Sure, both seem like fairly standard, common, even boring, ingredients. But these pickled cukes? They are tangy, sour, bright, spicy little bites of goodness.

Preserving food — which is what pickling actually entails — is not new. The need for keeping food edible, if not always fresh, has been around thousands of years. Born out of necessity in times of scarcity and drought, we’re now able to enjoy preserved foods under much happier circumstances. Lovers of pickling owe a great big thanks to Nicolas Apper, a Frenchman who invented the method for airtight food preservation. News of his discovery quickly spread and thus, so did massive canning practices. In recent years, home preservation has once again become a trend, probably due to the demand for fresh and organic foods around the world.

Pickles are a great food to have ready in your fridge. It’s quite easy to make different variations off of one basic recipe, and by making them yourself, you insure that what your family is eating is exactly what you want. No hidden preservatives here, thank you very much! Pickling your own cucumbers is also a huge time saver. Make big batches and use them in sandwiches, as appetizers, party favors, or even hostessing gifts. Experiment with the spices and flavors you like the most and have some fun.

One word of caution: While it is great fun to make canned products, It is important to take certain precautions. Do not forget to sterilize the utensils to be used in processing. Also, follow all instructions for sterilizing jars or cans.

Making homemade pickles is easy and delicious! In this recipe, cucumbers are bathed in a spicy mix of sharp vinegar and smoky chipotle chile backed up with some pickling staples like coriandergarlic and mustard seed. Enjoy them as a snack or part of your favorite recipe.

2 1/2 pounds mini seedless cucumbers, sliced
2 cups distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup sea salt
1/4 cup sugar
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon coriander seed
1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon mustard seed
1/4 teaspoon canned chipotle chile en adobo
1 pinch paprika
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper


1) Place the cucumbers in sterilized jars.
2) Combine the vinegar with 4 cups of water and the remaining spices. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the salt and sugar.
3) Pour the liquid over the cucumbers until they are covered. Screw the lids on the jars and store in the refrigerator.
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