Dill-ightful Celebrations: National Pickle Day Flavorful Festivities

Pickle lovers unite: It’s time to celebrate National Pickle Day!

One of the best cheeseburgers I’ve ever eaten was at a place called Americana Taphouse near Nashville.

The burger had bacon, Coca-Cola onion relish, white cheddar, spicy Thousand Island, lettuce, and the icing on the cake (or more likely the deliciousness of the burger)—spicy Kool-Aid pickles.

It sounded like an odd mix, but who can resist trying something with Kool-Aid pickles?

And I have to say—it did not disappoint!

So, it may be an unofficial holiday, but if you like to eat a pickle from time to time, or you like to put pickles on everything, join me in celebrating National Pickle Day!

The History of National Pickle Day

There aren’t a lot of known details of the history of National Pickle Day.

However, we do know that it originally began as part of National Pickle Week, started by the Pickle Packers Association in 1949.

We currently celebrate it on November 14th, but throughout the past, it has been celebrated during several different times.

While National Pickle Day may have been celebrated for over 50 years, people have been enjoying pickles for a lot longer than that.

Pickled Cucumbers

Some believe that preserved cucumbers, or pickles, date back to 2400 BC in Mesopotamia, while others believe they date back to 2030 BC in India.

History says that sailors likely spread the picking process outside of India since the preserved food was good to store for food on ships.

But, while India is often credited with creating the pickling process, the name is credited to the Dutch word ‘pekels’.

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Other pickled vegetables

If you want to get started with pickling, you don’t have to stop at cucumbers. There are lots of different vegetables you can pickle, including popular options like:

  • Cabbage
  • Peppers
  • Asparagus
  • Beets
  • Cauliflower
  • Okra
  • Radish
  • Tomatoes
  • Onion

How to pickle

During the pickling process, the veggie is added to a brine, typically made of salt, water, and vinegar.

The salt and vinegar help protect the food from bacteria.

However, there are other options you can use as well.

If you’re interested in making more pickled foods, I recommend diving into the science of the process so you can learn how to safely preserve the food you’re working with.

Ways to Celebrate National Pickle Day

If you’re looking for how to participate in National Pickle Day, it couldn’t be easier!

Eat pickles!

Try adding pickles to the food you’re eating today.

They’re great on sandwiches, burgers, and hot dogs.

People even make pickle salsa and, dare I say… pickletinis (which is where I think I have to draw the line, but give it a try and let me know what you think.)

There are pickle-flavor chips and pork strips.

Make National Pickle Day pickles

Don’t just eat pickles on National Pickle Day—make them, too!

What better way to enjoy eating pickles than to make your own?

You can even turn it into a fun tradition that you do every year with friends or family.

You can gather together and make pickles, or you can have a pickle-themed party, and everyone can cook their own food dish with pickles to share.

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Get creative and have fun

Years ago, I found a silly pickle birthday card to give a coworker for her birthday.

It turned into an ongoing joke; everyone got the pickle card for their birthdays, bridal showers, and baby showers.

Look for your own creative ways to celebrate Pickle Day with your friends.

Ready to Make Your Own Pickles?

I’ll be honest—I had BIG plans to start canning vegetables over the summer.

I even bought all the supplies, but time got the best of me, and now I have a bunch of empty mason jars and no delicious pickles, sauces, or anything else to enjoy.

However, my daughters mastered making their own pickles several years ago as part of a 4H meeting they attended.

The pickling process was incredibly simple, and we enjoyed their homemade dill pickles, which are my favorite pickles!

So, if you’ve been thinking about making pickles, there is no better time to try it than National Pickle Day.

There are many recipes you can find, but the basics for dill pickles include:

  • Slicing cucumbers in your favorite pickle shape
  • Brining in water, vinegar, salt, and sugar
  • Adding the cucumbers to a jar along with garlic and dill (or other spices and herbs)
  • Pouring the brine in the jar to cover the vegetables
  • Covering and storing in the refrigerator

Keep the pickles in the refrigerator until the flavors have developed and it has the exact pickle taste that you’re after.

Then, you can simply eat the pickles and enjoy the fruit of your pretty-simple labor!

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Different types of pickles

Of course, if this type of pickles isn’t your jam, you can simply make the type of pickles that you like best:

  • Bread and Butter
  • Full Sour (which uses just water and salt to brine the cucumbers)
  • Half Sour (they ferment for half the time of Full Sour)
  • Sweet
  • Gherkins (known for their crunchiness)
  • Cornichons (smaller than the Gherkins)

There are many debates between family and friends over the best type of pickle.

And, even if you can agree on a type, there are variations that make a big difference.

For example, some people prefer Polish dill pickles, while others prefer kosher dill.

Whatever your favorite type is, the internet is full of easy recipes to make pickles, even if you’re not a canning expert.

Here are a few recipes to get you started:

Happy Pickle Day!

Enjoy some pickles today either with a meal, as a snack or by making your own.

And celebrate by sharing your favorite pickle recipe or dish with us in the comments.

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