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RECIPES: Kowalski's pickle recipes

Pickles have been a hit at the State Fair. Here's how to make your own.

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. — Pickled foods have been a big hit at the Minnesota State Fair in recent years, from Pickle on a Stick to Pickle Pizza to Pickle Lemonade!

Kowalski's Culinary Director Rachael Perron says it's easy to make pickles at home in minutes with just a few pantry staples. She also shared a trio of pickle recipes when she stopped by the KARE Barn for KARE 11 Saturday.

Grandma Punky's Refrigerator Pickles

  • 1 ⅔ cups sugar
  • 1 cup tarragon vinegar (such as Heinz brand)
  • 1 tbsp. celery seed
  • 6-7 cups sliced cucumbers
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onion
  • Fresh tarragon, for garnish (optional)

In a medium mixing bowl, mix sugar, vinegar and celery seed well until sugar is dissolved. Add cucumbers and onion. Refrigerate for at least 24 hrs. before serving. Garnish with fresh tarragon, if desired.

Quick Jalapeño Pickles

  • 3 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • ¼ tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed and thinly sliced

In a small microwave-safe mixing bowl, combine vinegar, sugar and salt; microwave for 15-20 sec. Stir to dissolve sugar and salt. Add jalapeño; refrigerate for 30 min. before serving. Best enjoyed the day they are made.

Sweet and Spicy Watermelon Rind Pickles

  • Leftover watermelon rinds
  • 8 cups water
  • 3 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ tsp. whole peppercorns
  • 1 tsp. whole cloves
  • 1 tsp. whole allspice
  • ½ stick cinnamon
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes

Use a spoon to scrape any remaining pink flesh from watermelon rinds. Using a vegetable peeler, remove and discard the dark green peel from the melon rind; cut peeled rind into 1" squares about ½-¾" thick. Weigh out 1 ¼ lbs. peeled rind (about 5 cups). In a large pot over medium-high heat, combine rinds with water and salt. Bring to a boil; cook until tender (about 5 min.). Strain; set cooked rinds aside. In a medium saucepan, combine remaining ingredients; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add rinds to pan; remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Transfer rinds and brine to 2 pint-sized glass jars; cover and refrigerate for at least 1 day before serving. Store in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 2 weeks.

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