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Author Notes: Not quite a pickle and not quite a salad these Turkish flavors could grace your meze table in a Middle Eastern feast. - SippitySup —Sippity Sup (Greg Henry)
Food52 Review: The cucumbers and fennel in this recipe are wonderfully spiced. The tart, almost-pickles come out with the perfect amount of snap. The spicy cucumbers would be great on any meze platter. - Stephanie
- 1 pound very young cucumbers or better yet, Persian cucumbers
- 2 very young fennel bulbs
- 3 Thai bird chilis or similar hot pepper
- 10 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 cinnamon stick, broken into several pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste) optional
- 3 cups white vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- olive oil to taste
- Cut your cucumber into 1/2-inch spears. You may need to quarter or half them. Young Persian cucumbers can often be left whole. You are looking for uniformity, so use your judgment.
- Trim the fennel bulbs evenly, and cut them lengthwise into quarters. retain the fronds for garnish. Remove some of the core, keeping the layers intact. Slice these into 1/2-inch slices.
- Put the cucumbers, fennel, Thai chilis and garlic cloves into a low-sided large baking dish.
- Add all the remaining ingredients to a large, non-reactive, saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool some for about 5 minutes. Then poor the hot liquid over the cucumber fennel mixture, stirring to coat well. The liquid should nearly cover all the ingredients. If not add a bit more water.
- Let the mixture cool completely. You may then cover the dish and move it into the refrigerator. They will be ready to eat in about 4 hours, but will be at their best if you wait until the next day before eating them. Serve chilled on a family style platter with a bit of the marinade and a good drizzle of fruity olive oil. Garnish with fennel fronds.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Middle Eastern Recipe
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Cucumber Recipe
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