Everything I Like Causes Cancer

Where we've been convinced to write a new post on Dec. 2. Stay tuned!

I spent this past weekend in nothing more than pajamas or a swimsuit. I'd get up when I damn well felt like it, lounge in my jammies until the sun was directly over The Hamptons, change into my swimsuit and spend the rest of the day in the back yard despite temps in the high nineties and humidity in the eighties. I floated in the pool, listening to podcasts of my favorite NPR shows and thinking about what I had in the house to eat, which was next to nothing as I've been broke as a joke for about two weeks now. I had to get inventive but ended the weekend proud of the delicious and pleasing meals I created out of 6 eggs, a bag of tortilla chips, a can of refried beans, a smidgen of bacon, the butt end of a loaf of crusty bread, the butt end of a block of cheese, less than a pound of hamburger (discovered behind the popsicles), nine teabags and one cucumber.

My first amazing creation was refrigerator pickles. All summer my grandma would have one of these in the fridge filled with refrigerator pickles. I was always in trouble for snacking on them until there weren't any left for dinner. I had forgotten about them until a couple years back and was damned excited when I found a recipe that tasted just like grandma's.


Staples of my childhood summers

In response to an overwhelming demand for the recipe I decided to share. Okay, two of you said "blech!" and one of you mentioned maybe making them sometime but in my narcissistic mind that was you clamoring for instruction in domestic prowess so here you go:

Grandma's Pickles:

1 cucumber, sliced
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup cold water
dill, salt, and pepper to taste
a pinch of sugar

Let chill at least an hour or two to let the flavors meld. My grandma always included wedges of fresh tomatoes, too, but I didn't have any, didn't want to go get any, and needed to use the cucumber. You can also add onions, if you're into that sort of thing.

The fun side effect of this dish is the vinegary cucumber burps that come later. Radishes are also good for this. Mmmmmm . . . better the second time.

Also pictured above is a tall, cool glass of homemade iced tea. I'm always amazed that people don't know how to make tea. I'm pretty sure I could make tea before I could tie my shoes. Anyway, the following instruction is for them because everyone should know this.

Fresh-brewed Sweet Tea:

For a gallon of tea, submerge nine Lipton teabags (I use decaf) into boiling water. Let it bubble a little then remove from heat. Let it steep for a few minutes, but not too long or it will get bitter. Put a little less than a half cup of sugar into a gallon pitcher and pour the warm tea over the sugar. Stir to dissolve and then top off with cold water. You can use more sugar if you prefer syrup to a refreshing glass of tea, but I don't advise it.

Stir. Chill. Enjoy. Then call to tell me how great I am it is.

20 comments:

Amanda said...

WEIRD. I mentioned just yesterday in my facebook status that there was a jar of pickles, an entire JAR, missing from the refrigerator and then there you were in my google reader with a blog post titled refrigerator pickles. I was sure you were writing to confess that you had found them.

Soda and Candy said...

Blech.

But! I am proud of your heretofore unsuspected Suzy Homemaker tendencies. You'll be on my call list in the event of a natural disaster - when I only have a tin of beans, a pinch of basil and a packet of string cheese to my name.

SkylersDad said...

I would think that you could parley hanging in your swimsuit into free pizza delivery from that cute guy...

Bow chicka bow wow.

Dr Zibbs said...

Mmmm. I could go for that Iced Tea right about now.

Whiskeymarie said...

The pickles? Awesome. Sweet tea? Not so much. I like my tea as unsweetened and bitter as my personality, please.

Cora said...

Yep. I have to get creative with the menu too sometimes when money abandons me like a cheating bastard.

Once all I had was minute rice and applesauce. I thought oh what the hell and mixed it together and it was actually quite delicious.

Minute rice and hot microwaved blueberries isn't too bad either.

Nachos made from melted cheese and saltine crackers is okay.

Canned salmon with (....wait for it....) ketchup isn't too foul either. Surprisingly.

This is my secret shame.

Imnotbenny said...

I am so going to make those pickles- thanks for putting up the recipe.

I was starting to think you were toying with us about posting that ;)

Pearl said...

Nice. My Grandma always had refrigerator pickles in the summer, too...

Pearl

Jennifer and Sandi said...

Mmmmmmmm tea! Thanks, I think I'll go make some sun tea now!


Have a super weekend!

- Jennifer

Jennifer and Sandi said...

Mmmmmmmm tea! Thanks, I think I'll go make some sun tea now!


Have a super weekend!

- Jennifer

Sundar said...

I am going to try this out. I am almost tempted to add a pinch of dry mango powder. (You can get it from any Indian Grocery store).

Fancy Schmancy said...

Oh, you are great, and awesome! I can't wait to make these, I'm going to add onions AND garlic!

Jeannie said...

I grew up making ice tea as well although only by the glass which kinda sucks. My first job we had to make it for customers by the glass too. They had to add their own sugar (& lemon) which isn't as good as when they are added when the water is hot.

My daughter esp will love your cukes recipe. Hubby's allergic so he won't get any.

Nanodance said...

These recipes seem the epitome of summer. And since I AM OFFICIALLY ON SUMMER VACATION!!!- I'm sorry was I yelling?- I am totally going to make both of them, pronto.

LegalMist said...

mmm... summertime treats. Love it! Although, like Whiskeymarie, I prefer my tea completely unsweetened, and with a slice of lemon. ooh, so refreshing!

hello haha narf said...

oh my fuck, i want those cukes. NOW.

(i have the butter dish to match your grandma's dish. you want me to mail it to you? not even kidding.)

Renaissance Woman said...

Oh Gwen...you always give me something to think about! I just used your receipe and can't wait for the two hours to pass! We should be neighbors because between the two of us we could have come up with a few more random bites for the weekend.

Renaissance Woman said...

Oh Gwen...you always give me something to think about! I just used your receipe and can't wait for the two hours to pass! We should be neighbors because between the two of us we could have come up with a few more random bites for the weekend.

Lori Beth said...

I think the cucumber/vinegar thing is more of a Southern treat? Maybe? I live in KY and those "refrigerator pickles" were a staple for any summertime meal...still are actually.

Cant Hardly Wait said...

I'm lazy, I make my tea in a coffee pot.

Subscribe