You will need a large lidded jar or an
oblong non-metallic container with a tightly fitting lid. Cut each
cucumber lengthways into six spears. Mix together the wine vinegar,
water, salt and sugar. Crush a few of the peppercorns and leave the rest
whole. Add them to the liquid. Cut the garlic clove in half. Arrange the
cucumber spears in the jar or container, pour over the pickling liquid
and add the garlic. Put in a few sprigs of dill if using. Make sure they
are completely submerged. Leave the cucumbers, covered, in the fridge
for at least two days. To serve, lift them out and discard the garlic,
dill and peppercorns. Store any uneaten cucumbers in their pickling
liquid in the fridge.
Often served with salt beef, these
gherkins or cucumbers are simple to prepare but take a couple of days
for the flavor to develop.