Cucumber Pickle

A classic, the best of all bread and cheese pickles, with its clean fresh taste. It goes well with sausages and fatty meats such as Grilled Pigs’ Trotters. Towards the end of the summer is the time to make cucumber pickle, when the growers are clearing out their greenhouses, selling off the twisted and misshapen cucumbers at bargain prices.


  • 1.6 kg/ lb cucumbers
  • 450 g/1 lb onions, finely sliced
  • 1 pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 40 g/ oz salt
  • 275 g/10 oz brown sugar
  • 40 g/ oz mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground mace
  • 600 ml/1 pint white wine vinegar


Peel and slice the cucumbers thinly – you should end up with about 1.4 kg/3 lb of prepared cucumber. Mix with the onions, green pepper and salt. Set aside for 2–3 hours, then drain, rinse under the cold tap and drain again, pressing down gently to extract as much moisture as possible without damaging the slices.

Put the sugar, spices and vinegar into a pan large enough to take the vegetables as well. Stir over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved, then bring to the boil. Simmer for 2 minutes and add the vegetables. Bring back to the boil, stir well and remove from the heat. Pack into clean jars, cover and seal while hot. Store for at least a month in a cool, dark place.