One day, not too far ago, I was casting around for something to eat for lunch. There was a rapidly softening tomato, a few sprigs of basil and a 1/4 cup of tiny mozzarella balls. Knowing that those items would make a nice salad, I started rummaging for something to add a bit of crunch and volume to the salad. There wasn’t a cucumber, stalk of celery or pepper to be found in my crisper.
However, there were a few dill pickle spears floating in a jar (the remains of these pickles, in fact). Roughly chopped and stirred together with the other salad components, a spoonful of the brine and glug of olive oil, it was the perfect lunch. I’ve now taken to adding dilly beans or pickled cauliflower to just about any chopped salad I make, both for the gentle crunch and the pucker they lend.