Gherkin cucumbers are generally small, averaging 10 to 15 centimeters in length, and have a cylindrical, oblong, to ovoid shape with rounded ends. The skin is firm, textured, and dark to light green, sometimes covered in many bumps. Underneath the surface, the flesh is crisp, pale green, aqueous, and contains a few small, edible seeds. Gherkin cucumbers are known for their crunchy, juicy consistency and have a mild, green, and vegetal flavor. While Gherkin cucumbers are found fresh in limited supply, they are more famously known around the world in their pickled state. Gherkin cucumbers contain high water content, and when soaked in a brine, the solution replaces the water in the flesh creating a flavorful, tangy pickle that can be incorporated as a salty and crunchy ingredient in both sweet and savory culinary applications.
Gherkin cucumbers are best suited for both raw and cooked applications such as sauteing and stir-frying. The fruits can be consumed fresh and served with dips on appetizer plates, lightly sauteed with aromatics as a crisp side dish, tossed into green salads, or stir-fried with other vegetables. They can also be soaked in sugar-based syrup and served as a sweet snack or dessert. In addition to using the fruits fresh or cooked, Gherkin cucumbers are more popularly pickled in a brine of various vinegar, herbs, and spices. Pickled Gherkins can be eaten as a snack, chopped and stirred into egg salad, minced into a relish, or layered into burgers and sandwiches.
Fresh Gherkin cucumbers will keep 1-2 weeks when stored in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.
Homemade Easy Pickled Cucumbers
1 pound cucumbers
1.5 cups water
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tablespoon sea salt
0.5 ounce dill