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Thanks to a generous grant from the Foundation for Jewish Camp, this week we had the absolute pleasure of hosting Avram Mandell from Tzedek America to teach our Kadimah and LTP campers about the connection between Judaism and Pickles!  Among the fun facts that they learned are:

  • Pickles are mentioned in the Talmud
  • Cucumbers are mentioned in the Torah
  • Jews created the pickle industry in the United States with over 100 pickle carts on the Lower Eastside in NY in the early 1900’s.

After a little bit of learning, campers actually got to make a jar of pickles to take home or taste at camp. Here is the recipe that they used: 

Tzedek America Half Sour Pickles Recipe


•5 kirby cucumbers or however many you can fit into your jar

•1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds

•1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds

•1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns

•few pieces of fresh dill

•3 bay leaves

•6 cloves garlic minced

•1/4 cup sea salt

•6 cups water

•additional whole coriander seeds and peppercorns to add on top

Add a grape leaf or oak leaf to keep the pickles crisp and also use it to keep them below the water.  Anything above water will rot/become mushy.

If mold forms on the lid just wipe it off, everything in the salt water is protected from “bad bacteria.”

This recipe is based on this website:  https://brooklynfarmgirl.com/2013/07/15/half-sour-pickles-5/

Refrigerating the pickles stops the fermentation process but stills flavors the pickles nicely.  We only recommend letting them sit out of the refrigerator for 2 to 5 days to get that “sour” taste.    If you keep them out of the refrigerator, loosen the lid and but the jar in a bowl to catch the brine that is pushed out by the creation of CO2 in the fermentation process.   


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