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Cornichons from France. While they look like gherkins, cornichons are European pickles picked at two inches in length. Photo by Claire Freierman.




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May 2008
Updated February 2010

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Condiments

Pickle Glossary

Types Of Pickles & Pickled Vegetables

Page 4: Pickle Terms Beginning With Letters M ~ P



This is Page 4 of a 5-page glossary. Some of the terms below include mason jar, pepperoncini and pickled peppers. After you’ve peeked at the pickles, take a look at our other food glossaries—an easy way to get up to speed on more than fifty different food categories.

Click on the letter of the alphabet in this bar to get to a section
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This glossary is protected by copyright and cannot be reproduced in whole or part.


Mason Jar
Mass-produced glass jars for home canning, invented by John L. Mason. They are also known as Ball jars after an early manufacturer of the product.

Overnight Dill Pickle
This is a quick preparation in which the fresh cucumbers are placed into the brine, generally without vinegar, for a brief period, about one to two days, under constant refrigeration. The result is a bright green pickle that tastes like a marinated fresh cucumber, much less acidic than a typical pickle. These are akin to “half sours.”

PepperThis pickled pepper is a medium-hot chile, grown in Italy. They are alsocalled Tuscan peppers or golden Greek peppers. Pepperoncini are popular in antipastos and Mediterranean-style salads and are sliced into cold rice and pasta dishes. They can be stuffed with mozzarella and other cheese.
Photo courtesy of Victoria Packing.

In Western cuisine, a pickle generally refers to a pickled cucumber. In Korea, it would refer to pickled cabbage (kimchi); in Japan, to pickled vegetables. Each region of the world has its own pickling tradition. In Western European tradition, the pickling brine is often flavored with dill and garlic. Our word comes from the Middle English “pekille.”

Pickle Chips
Bread and Butter PicklesChips, a.k.a. slices, are meant to be served on (or with) hamburgers and sandwiches. Popular varieties include bread-and-butter, genuine dill and kosher dill. Pickle chips are available in smooth or waffle-cut styles. Waffle-cut places ridges across the face of the pickle.
Photo by Mary K. Baird | MorgueFile.

Pickle Relish
See Relish.

Pickled Peppers
More than 15 varieties of chile peppers are pickled in the same way as cucumbers. They range from mild pepperoncini to banana peppers to the hotter cherry peppers and the very hot pickled jalapeños. They are available whole and in rings, which are used to garnish hors d’oeuvres, salads and sandwiches/burgers.

Pickled Vegetables
Almost any vegetable or fruit can be pickled. Aside from cucumbers, cabbage (sauerkraut) is the most universally found. Some of the more popular pickles include asparagus, beets, carrots, cauliflower, cocktail onions, green tomatoes and okra. See our review of Tillen Farms pickled vegetables.

Pickling Spices
Each pickler has his or her own favorite blend of spices. Pickling spices are also sold as a spice mix, and can include allspice, bay leaf, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, coriander, crushed hot pepper, dill seed, ginger, juniper berry, mace, mustard seed and peppercorn. More modern cooks will include curry, wasabi soy sauce and other international seasonings in their brines.

Polish-Style Dill Pickle
A garlicky pickle, similar in flavor profile to the kosher dill pickle.

Processed Pickle
See Fermented Pickle.

Processing Methods
Most pickles are produced by one of three methods: refrigerated, fresh-pack or processed (also called cured or fermented). Each method creates distinct flavors and textures. Additional flavors are achieved by adding different herbs, spices and seasonings to the brine toward the end of fermentation. See also Cuts.



Continue To Page 5: Pickle Terms Q ~ W

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