Beer-Battered Pickles with Garlic and Dill Sauce

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This is what my life has become…  Going to the trouble to heat up oil, to risk burning down my apartment (if anyone would, it’s me), and to figure out how to get rid of said oil–all for 6 beer-battered, fried pickle spears.

That’s all I trusted myself with, and I was right.  Know thyself!

My mind was blown when I had my first fried pickles at Great Basin.  You’d think the only way to enjoy pickles is cold and crunchy, but no.  I swear on my memory foam mattress topper–this stuff is delicious.  It’s the warm but still crunchy, vinegary, salty goodness of pickles, wrapped up in a blanket of crunch.

And naturally, I enjoyed them on my balcony with at least one cold beer.  There had to be dipping sauce too–we’ll keep that component light, yet delicious.  Sound good?

First, the dipping sauce.  This all looks wholesome and harmless, doesn’t it?  Nevermind that we’re heating up a big pot o’ fat outside of the frame.  Out of sight, out of mind.  This is going to help us greatly, though.  It’s a zesty, garlicky, bright Greek yogurt-based dip.  For balance, because goodness knows–we’ll need it.

Next, the batter.  It’s foamy and bubbly, like a luxurious bubble bath.

But this isn’t for bathing.  Gross, you guys.  Sorry.

Prep the pickle spears by patting them dry with a paper towel, then sprinkling them with flour.  Use whatever you find delicious.  Me?  My heart belongs to Nathan’s.

Once the oil is heated, things happen quickly.  Dunk!  Shake off the excess batter!  Maybe that’s too much we just shook off–dunk again!  Add more quickly! Ahh, this one is so brown already!  Tongs!  Paper towel!

I’m dizzy just thinking about it.

Clearly, I just need to fry more things.  Sorry, current-size pants.  It was nice knowing you.

This is item #4 from this year’s list of fun things I want to make.  Progress!

Beer-Battered Pickles with Garlic-Dill Sauce
(adapted from the Food Network

For sauce:
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (I used nonfat)
1/2 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
1-2 tablespoons buttermilk (optional)

For pickles:
1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup beer of your choice (I used an IPA)
6 kosher dill spears (the recipe makes plenty of batter to double or triple this, though)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peanut oil, for frying 

To make the sauce, combine first four ingredients in a small bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper.  If desired, thin it out with buttermilk to your desired consistency.

To make the batter, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl.  Whisk in the beer and buttermilk and stir to combine thoroughly.

Heat the oil in a large pot or deep fryer to 350 degrees.  Pat the pickle spears dry with a paper towel, and sprinkle flour on them.  Dunk each spear into the batter to coat and gently drop it into the oil.  Cook until the outside is crisp and golden brown (about 2 minutes).  Transfer to paper towels to drain, and serve immediately alongside dipping sauce.

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  1. says

    You know – don’t be grossed out – you can save that oil in a glass jar and use it again later. Just sayin’. Or you can pour it in a disposable can – like an old oatmal container after it cools, and dispose of it that way. Fried things are dangerous, aren’t they? In more ways than one. . . .

    • says

      Hey, that’s a good call! I actually did have some oil from the last time I attempted frying, but I thought it smelled gross. Is it supposed to smell kind of gross? Maybe I kept it around for too long.

  2. Rachel says

    Will you marry me? Dead serious, I’m proposing through blog comments. You would make me the happiest woman ever!