Quick Korean-Style Cucumber Pickle
Years ago, when my husband and I were dating, we used to enjoy going out for Korean barbecue on Friday nights. One of my favorite things about these outings was the array of colorful sweet, sour, spicy pickles that accompanied our meal. There would inevitably be daikon, carrot, cucumber, and kimchi on the table. Other pickles varied according to the seasons.
I still love the way Korean pickles compliment grilled meats. The crisp, mildly sweet, tangy pickles contrast beautifully with smoky grilled meats.
At that time, Korean foods were a lot less common than they are now, and the internet was still in its early days. So, I had no idea how to prepare these treats at home. Thankfully, today, with the wide range of resources available online, authentic Korean recipes are more accessible than ever.
Many Korean pickles take time and patience, because they are naturally fermented. I love fermented pickles for their complexity and subtlety. However, being busy, I don’t always think far enough ahead to have fermented treats (which never last long) on hand when I want them.
So, I was delighted to discover that not all Korean pickles are fermented. There are also a few quick pickles. These cucumbers, using every day pantry ingredients, come together in just over 30 minutes.
The pickles in this recipe were inspired by a recipe I found on My Korean Kitchen, one of my favorite Korean food blogs. They are delicious on their own, but spectacular when served with grilled meats, steamed rice, and butter lettuce to wrap it all up in.
I hope your family enjoys these pickles as much as mine does. Bon appétit!