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IN A PICKLE: Sara reveals chef secrets to mastering the art of preservation

TAFE NSW Wagga Wagga

IN A PICKLE: Sara reveals chef secrets to mastering the art of preservation

PRESERVING FLAVOUR: TAFE NSW cookery expert Sara Morley said pickling delicious vegetables need not be time-consuming.

Depending on who you speak to, pickles are either the very definition of deliciousness or cucumbers soaked in evil.

But polarising as pickling may be, it’s still an ideal way to preserve vegetables and inject some added flavour into them, according to TAFE NSW cookery expert Sara Morley.

Speaking on her regular TAFE Buds segment on ABC Riverina this morning, Ms Morley shared some quickfire tips on perfecting the art of pickling.

“There are so many vegetables in season in summer and when you’re done making slices, soups and fritters, you’ve often still got leftovers from the garden,” Ms Morley said.

“You then start thinking about how you preserve them, and while you can make things like jams and relishes, pickling is also a great option.”

Ms Morley said pickling need not be a laborious and time-consuming process, revealing her “super-quick” method for pickling cucumbers (see recipe below).

“The cucumbers actually don’t get to the fermenting stage, this method just infuses flavour into them,” Ms Morley said.

“Once they’re ready to go, you can eat them straight out of the fridge with a piece of cheese or slap them on a hamburger.”

As for the age old debate about pickles on hamburgers, Ms Morley and ABC Riverina host Gemma Pialli were both firmly in the “leave them on” camp.

If you’d like a career in food, TAFE NSW offers a range of courses to help get you into the job of your dreams – visit or call 131 601.



Quick cucumber pickle:


  • 500g cucumber (any variety but I prefer continental)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cup water
  • 100mls white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt



Slice the cucumber and onion thinly and evenly (a mandolin is helpful)

Mix the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small bowl. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

Add the cucumber and onion and toss gently.

Place into containers to fit, ensuring that the brine covers the cucumber.  (or leave in mixing bowl and cover)

The flavours will develop and the cucumber soften over time, so overnight is good, but actually an hour will be enough.


Zucchini pickle


  • 500g zucchini
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 500mls white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric



Slice your zucchini and onion thinly and evenly (a mandolin is helpful).

Combine in a bowl with salt and leave for about 2-3 hours to extract excess water.  Drain well.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a pan and bring to a gently simmer. Stir to ensure sugar is dissolved.

Place the zucchini and onions in a clean jar and carefully fill with the hot liquid. Fill the jar/s to just below the lid.  (For longer preservation boil the jar/s for 20 minutes then cool, to sterilize, otherwise eat within seven days)