This post has been sponsored by TRISCUIT. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
It has been a slew of years since living in the northwest of England, but sometimes, I’ll hear a song or taste something that takes me right back in an instant. Some of those things I miss, and others…. not so much. What I do miss is the rich history and culture, trivia night at the local pub, the beauty of the countryside, and even kayaking on the canals. I learned how to have a proper afternoon tea, order chips instead of fries, and fell in love with the ploughmans lunch.
Ok, so you might be wondering, “what in the world is a ploughmans lunch?”, and yes, it does sound like it’s a beef and potatoes kind of meal. The fact is, that it is simply a cheese and pickle sandwich, nothing fancy at all. The British enjoy this straight forward meal, not with bread and butter or dill pickles, but with a ploughmans pickle. To me, it is actually more of what I would consider a savory-sweet chutney or even relish. You might have heard it referred to as a ploughmans pickle or a branston pickle, but regardless, it’s always great served with a sharp cheese.
In order for me to bring a bit of the “mother land” back home, I’ve started making my own version of this pickle recipe. It’s really straight forward, makes plenty for now and later and will keep for up to 6 months because of the vinegar base, that is if you can resist staying out of it long enough.
I have found that this relish, chutney … pickle, is absolutely gorgeous paired up with a nice sharp cheese and my all time favorite crackers since childhood, TRISCUIT Crackers! I love it, not only as a snack, but this ploughmans pickle gently topping off TRISCUIT Crackers (a serving is 6 crackers) makes for a great appetizer any time of the day or year.
Just as much as I have great memories associated with the living in the UK and ploughmans pickle, I also have great memories of TRISCUIT Crackers throughout my early years. My mom always had them at hand, and we would enjoy them straight out of the box, and she could fancy them up a bit and make an easy charcuterie board for the inevitable drop in guests.
Recently I was enjoying a bit of a jaunt, and decided to stop off at my local Kroger to pick up a few of the basics before heading home. While there I had one of those spontaneous moments while perusing the aisle with all the crackers. I indeed saw those glorious 3-ingredient TRISCUIT Crackers and before I knew it, I had all of the pickle ingredients to make a batch of ploughmans pickle. Whoa Nellie! It’s like I’m on autopilot every time, I know that store like the back of my hand! Albeit, they do know me well at Kroger, what keeps me going back is that I love that they always ask how my kids are getting on, or if my groceries intrigue them enough, they also ask what I’m going to be making.
I totally recommend checking out your closest Kroger to pick up the ingredients for this Ploughmans Pickle recipe, specifically TRISCUIT Crackers.
Enjoy making your own batch of Ploughmans Pickle!
- 16 oz malt or apple vinegar
- 2 cups water
- 1/3 cup lemon juice
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
- 2 tsp ground allspice
- 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp mustard powder
- 2 tsp salt
- 7 - 8 oz pitted dates, chopped
- ½ medium cauliflower (about 2 1/2 - 3 cups), finely chopped
- 2 onions, finely diced
- 2 apples, finely diced
- 2 zucchinis, finely diced
- 20 cornichon Pickles
- 5 - 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 - 3 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves (or 1 - 2 tsp dried), optional
- In a large saucepan over medium high heat, mix together everything from the vinegar through salt, bringing it to boil.
- Add in the remaining ingredients and reduce the heat to simmer. Continue to simmer 1 1/2 - 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Transfer into clean pint jars, leaving about a half inch room at top, wipe the rims clean if needed, and seal with lids.
- You can process in a water bath if desired, or store in refrigerator for 4 - 6 months.
- You can enjoy right away, but just like any pickle, it is best the longer you allow the flavors to blend together. I try to save opening a jar or two after about a month.
To Make the Appetizer:
Enjoy your the ploughmans pickle, with your choice of sharp cheese and top off your favorite TRISCUIT Crackers, you can garnish with additional fresh Thyme leaves or fresh green sprouts.