Pickle-loving Pittsburghers came in droves to the Rachel Carson Bridge this past July to celebrate all things pickle, pickled and soon-to-be pickled. Produced by the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, Picklesburgh included demonstrations on how to pickle various veggies, pickle-juice drinking competitions, and live music to boot! Favorites included Quick Pickled Dilly Green Tomatoes with Ryan from Whole Foods and the Vietnamese Pickled Veggies.
The only downside was that some of the demos ran out of their pickled delights before I could get my pickled mitts on them. To find out more about our own Pickled Piper (John Heinz-who gave over 1 million pickle pins out at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair) and all things pickle, make sure to pick up some of these library resources: Just try not to drink too much pickle juice while you do….
H. J. Heinz : A Biography, Quentin R. Skrabec. A great intro to H.J. Heinz and his enormous success as a businessman. This book is a quick read, but goes to great lengths to distinguish a man who has been over overshadowed by his contemporaries (Mellon, Fritz, and Carnegie). Unlike his contemporaries, Heinz was known to be a considerate employer, treating both his employees and suppliers with respect. A good introduction to a Pittsburgh’s famous son.
Pickled: From Curing Lemons to Fermenting Cabbage, the Gourmand’s Ultimate Guide to the World of Pickling, Kelly Carrolata. There are four parts to this book: Part I covers “How to Pickle”, Part II gets into the nitty gritty by giving the reader “Recipes for Pickling.” In the second half of the book, Part III covers “Meals with Pickles,” while Part IV deals not with food, but “Drinks with Pickles.” This book is an excellent how-go guide with a dash of pickling history . Lots of great pickle recipes if you’re the DIY type who wants a beginner’s guide to this process.
The Pickled Pantry, Andrea Chesman. Chesman is the author of over 20 cookbooks on various topics. This book provides a pickle primer, with various pickling methods and techniques discussed. Examples include fermented, hot pack canned pickles, and refrigerator pickles. These are further examined with recipes and a quick history of pickles. Excellent for those of that love a challenge.
The Art of Fermentation : an In-depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes From Around the World, Sandor Ellix Katz. Winner of the 2013 James Beard Foundation Book Award for Reference and Scholarship, this is a slightly more comprehensive and in-depth guide to fermentation. The author covers every imaginable food and beverage and gives the beginner and the foodie something both can appreciate: an extensive explanation of the concepts behind fermentation and how it applies to everything from agriculture to art (well, one more than the other). This book remains firmly entrenched in practicalities though and has information on effective preservation and safety techniques.
What’s your position on pickles? Let us know in the comments section!