Peter Piper’s got nothin’ on Lee Greene.
The owner of The Scrumptious Pantry, Chicago’s homegrown producer of specialty food items, recently unveiled a line of pickle products two years in the making. Greene’s fervor for pickling begins at the root (Wisconsin and Illinois), where she sources heirloom vegetables from farmers.
A low-salt and vinegar brine, as well as spices and herbs that complement but don’t overwhelm, allow the veggies to shine. The Beaver Dam pepper (brought here by Hungarian immigrants in 1913) gets a classic Eastern European spice profile from bay leaves, while lemon cucumbers (a crunchy cuke with nonbitter skin) are treated with cayenne.
Add the pickles to antipasti, salads, or cheese plates — or eat them straight from the jar. Coming soon: pickled beets with thyme and giardiniera (a cauliflower, banana pepper, carrot, and fennel medley).
Now that’s a mouthful.
Available online at scrumptiouspantry.com, $9 per jar.
Photo: Niki Dankner