My favorite sandwich growing up in England was cucumber with butter. And if they are cut up into kicky little quarters, all the better. Tea sammies are, in my book, pretty much the bomb. And it occurred to me the other day that they would be the perfect way to feed a crowd. For our holiday bash on Friday night, I knew I wanted to do radish slathered with my favorite Irish butter and sprinkled with gray sea salt. And then I’ve been dying to try my friend Andrew Knowlton’s family recipe for Pimento Cheese. I mentioned as much to my friend Hugh, who came up with a third option—a totally inspired riff on David Chang’s pork buns: bacon with pickles, cilantro and hoisin. I love it! I made a batch of Chang’s vinegar pickles and you can’t believe how easy these are and they payoff is HUGE. You can do this with any vegetables you want to pickle. And ideally you want to really pack the jar with vegetables. But what you really, really want to do is to buy the cookbook. But I digress.
1 cup water, piping hot from tap
1/2 rice wine vinegar
6 tablespoons sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
2 large cucumbers, thinly sliced
Combine water, vinegar, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl and stir until the sugar dissolves.
Pack the cucumbers into a quart container. Pour brine over vegetables, cover and refrigerate. Allow to sit 3-4 days at a minimum, a week for optimum flavor. Pickles will keep for at least a month.