Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, and Mrs. Pickle picked some of her favorite pickle recipes to share with students before they head back to school.

Carolyn Haddock, known tenderly as Mrs. Pickle to youngsters, will host Off to School with Mrs. Pickle at 1 p.m. Thursday at the Christian County Literacy Council office.

The program, organized yearly by the Literacy Council, is for students entering kindergarten through third grade. Older or younger siblings are welcome to attend as well.

Haddock and literacy council members not only whip up creative pickle dishes, but Haddock will show her plethora of pickle memorabilia and share stories that encourage students to have a “sweet not sour” school year.

Haddock, a retired teacher and guidance counselor, said this year she especially wants to emphasize sweet pickles and what it means to be sweet to others.

“My focus this year is ‘kindness counts,’” she said. “Considering the world we live in, we could all use a little more kindness, and I want them to have a sweet pickle year.”

Literacy Council Director Beverly Whitfield has been busy editing the council’s “Literally Delicious” cookbook, which features recipes submitted by Community Reader Day volunteers.

Whitfield said a section in the book is called “Mrs. Pickle Prefers Potpourri.” There are several pickle recipes submitted by other pickle-lovers, including the PB&P — peanut butter and pickles sandwich.

“Believe me, youngsters do love pickles and very little is left on the picnic table,” Whitfield exclaimed.

Reach Zirconia Alleyne at 270-887-3243 or zalleyne@kentuckynwera.com.

Dill pickle dip

8 ounces cream cheese

1 cup sour cream

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp parsley

3/4 cup dill pickle spears, drained and finely chopped (about 6 spears)

5 ounces dried beef, finely chopped

Combine cream cheese, sour cream and seasonings in a bowl. Beat until smooth. Stir in pickles and beef. Cover and chill in refrigerator for at least two hours. Serve with crackers.

Crunchy pickle and ham

1 12-ounce package of smoked cooked ham (or any favorite lunch meat)

1 24-ounce jar dill spears, drained

1 8-ounce tub soft cream cheese

Pat ham and pickle spears dry with paper towel. Spread ham slices with about 1 tablespoon cream cheese. Top each ham slice with 1 pickle spear and roll up. Refrigerate 1 hour or overnight. Cut each pickle roll in to 4 to 6 pieces to serve as appetizers.

Dill pickle lovers pasta salad

1/2 pound dry shell pasta (about 3 cups)

3/4 cup sliced pickles

2/3 cup cheddar cheese, diced

3 tablespoons onion, finely diced

2 tablespoons fresh dill

1/2 cup pickle juice

Dressing:

2/3 cup mayonnaise

1/3 cup sour cream

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 tablespoons pickle juice

Salt and pepper to taste

Boil pasta according to package directions. Run under cold water to stop cooking. Toss cold pasta with about a half cup of pickle juice and set aside for about 5 minutes. Drain and discard pickle juice. Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. Toss all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

Puckering pickle pops

30 ounces pickle juice (dill works best)

A pinch of sugar to taste (optional)

Place 5 ounces of juice (mixed with a small amount of sugar, if desired) into six Popsicle molds with Popsicle sticks. Small Dixie cups or an ice cube tray work well also. Freeze until firm.

Stuffed dill pickles

2 large dill pickles

1 (5 1/2 ounce) jar cheese spread, any flavor

Cut off both ends of the pickles, and using an apple corer, scoop out the center removing all of the seedy pulp. Fill the center of the pickle with the cheese spread. Chill several hours. Cut each pickle into 1/4-inch slices.

Fire and ice pickles

2 32-ounce jars medium whole dill pickles

4 cups sugar

2 Tablespoons hot sauce

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 Tablespoons garlic

Cut pickles into 1/4-inch slices.

Combine pickles sugar, hot sauce and red pepper flakes in large bowl.

Cover and let stand 2 hours. Stir well and spoon mixture back into jars. Add 1 teaspoon crushed garlic to each jar. Cover and refrigerate up to 1 month for best

flavor.

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