Fried Pickles, Tru Pickles and On a Stick Cookbook

September 18, 2011 at 7:54 am | Posted in Appetizers | 35 Comments
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What’s your favorite thing to eat on a stick?

I think mine has always been corn dogs, but after reading through the newest addition to my cookbook collection, corn dog status has officially become threatened. Let’s take a small peek into Matt Armendariz’s first cookbook On a Stick.  I don’t think I need to tell anyone that Matt is a rock star blogger, a professional food photographer and now a published cookbook author.

Matt’s photo from On a Stick cookbook. (I was given permission from the publisher to print this photo.)

My photo and the recipe I made from On a Stick cookbook.

Note to self:  find a blue weathered piece of wood.

I’m killing three pigs with one bird in this post. (Yes, I’ve been playing way too many games of Angry Birds on my I-Phone).

  1. Fried pickles has been on my list of things to make for a long time.
  2. A couple of months ago I uncharacteristically wildly waved my hand to receive a free copy of Matt Armendariz, or Matt Bites, new cookbook. As a “condition” of receiving the cookbook they asked me to talk about it on my blog.  I am gladly obliging.
  3. This gives me the opportunity to talk about a great local product; Tru Kosher Dill Pickles. And they’re jarred right here in my backyard in Littleton, CO.

Fried Pickles With Ranch Dressing:  I must say, I was taken with this tasty dish. This is the first time I’ve had them and I loved the warm, crunchy, flavor packed appetizer. Truly a treat for the palate. Matt’s recipe in the book called for pairing sweet gherkins with cocktail onions and dill pickle chips. The trio is then skewered on a stick for great little presentation. For the dipping sauce, I used a packet of Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing. It’s been years since I’ve bought it and I had forgotten how good it is.

Fried Pickles With Ranch Dressing, On a Stick Cookbook

  • 8 wooden cocktail picks
  • 1 qt. vegetable oil
  • 1/3 C. all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 T. buttermilk
  • 1 T. dill, minced
  • 1-1/2 C. seasoned bread crumbs
  • 8 gherkins
  • 8 cocktail onions
  • 8 dill pickle chips (I used sliced Tru Kosher Dill Pickles)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 C. store-bought ranch dressing

Preheat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat.

Mix flour and cayenne pepper in a shallow dish. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, buttermilk, and dill. Place bread crumbs in a second shallow bowl.

Thread 1 gherkin, 1 cocktail onion, and 1 pickle chip on each cocktail pick. Once oil reached 350 degrees F., toss skewers in flour mixture, shaking off excess; dip in egg and then dredge in bread crumbs until fully coated.

Drop skewers gently into oil and fry 4 – 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Serve with ranch dressing.

On a Stick cookbook.  I’m glad I wildly waved that hand to receive a copy of this book. Chock full of fun recipes and great photos, it’s a welcome addition to my collection. With a line of foods that you’d expect to serve on a stick, like corn dogs and satays, he also throws us some curves with fun ideas for deep-fried mac and cheese, pizza skewers and potato chips on a stick. And are you ready for this one…Spaghetti and Meatballs on a stick. Also offered is an extensive dessert section with cinnamon rolls on a stick and deep-fried candy bars. FUN stuff folks. And of course, each recipe partners with a beautiful photo to entice you into hunger.

I’ve already got several recipes bookmarked and look forward to making many of these fun dishes. Thanks for a great cookbook Matt.

Tru Pickles.  As I mentioned above, these pickles are bottled not literally in my backyard, but in Littleton, CO. That means I’ve got a “neighbor” turning out some delicious pickles. They say “You’ve never tasted a dill pickle like this”. They’re very good and packed to the gill with crazy good flavor and yes, I’ve never tasted a pickle like this. Grape leaves are packaged in each jar for crispness and a unique flavor experience. I love that they’re a local product, I love how crunchy they are, and they are the most flavorful pickle I’ve ever eaten. They are sold nationally, so take a look at their web-site, Tru Pickles to find out where you can pick up a jar.

So with all that said, whether it be a pickle or spaghetti, get out your skewers and eat something On A Stick.

Fried Pickles…They’re What’s for an Appetizer.



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  1. I must admit I can’t quite imagine the flavor of fried pickles! Love knowing about the local pickle maker. Love anything with Ranch Dressing. I would say my fave stick food would either be satee or a corndog; world’s apart but equally delicious! Thanks for the insight on the book Lea Ann.

  2. My sister gave me a case of Tru pickles for Christmas last year – I LOVE them! She originally found them, oddly, when she was getting tires at a tire store. They also sell them at my Ace Hardware right near my house so that’s where I pick them up. Great pickle!

  3. On A Stick! is an excellent book, I have it on my shelves. But the pickles you mentioned made me laugh. We live near Oak Ridge where the fuel materials for our nation’s nuclear arsenal has been made since WWII. They’ve been cleaning up the “legacy wastes” for a long time and the nastiest of the radioactive contaminants is called TRU waste (trans-uranic).

    Do your pickles glow in the dark? ha ha

    • Ok, now that’s funny! These pickles are actually Tru with two dots over the U … that officially makes them non radioactive. 🙂

  4. Great post LA and I think your shot looks fine without the blue board. Fried pickles have been on my list for awile now and I believe this has inspired me – I really like the on a stick idea. I’m not much of a cookbook person, so I’ll look forward to trying the recipes after you test and approve them. I trust we’ll have Tru-pickles and something when I make it out there.

    • You got it Larry. Tru pickles it is. I do believe I liked the sweet pickles a little bit better than the sour. However, bathed in that Ranch dressing, it was all good.

  5. I have never heard about or eaten fried pickles. They look very tasty, so!
    Hm, my favorite food on a stick? Chicken satay.

    • Merle’s in downtown Littleton serves up some good fried pickles. We might have to schedule a field trip.

  6. You are too funny. I sometimes look at pictures and think, where does one get such cool weathered wood! Fried pickles are big down here, well fried anything. Great post.

    • I am now officially on a mission to find weathered wood.

  7. Well — I love pickles and I love fried stuff, but this may take me a few minutes to warm up to.

    • You need to spend about a week with me. I’ll cure you of that picky eating. 🙂

  8. Great post, Lea Ann. I admit I’ve never tried a fried pickle and just thinking about it makes my mouth kind of pucker. I love just about anything fried, especially if there is some ranch dressing to dip it into. This would be a fun party appetizer.

    • Thanks Cathy. Like I said, I had forgotten how good that Hidden Valley Ranch dressing is. The pickles weren’t as sour as you’d think. Something about cooking them tames them down a bit.

  9. I’ve always wanted to try fried pickles and matt definitely makes them sound so delicious! So do you…I think it’s time I gave them a go!

    • They were pretty darn easy Joanne, and delicious.

  10. Those pickles look fabulous, Lea Ann. And it sounds like you started off with some good ones…I’ve never heard of that company.
    What a fun cookbook. (You’ll need to find barn siding for the weathered look!) This isn’t the first time I’ve heard about it. I’ll check it out, and Matt’s blog.

    I had to go back to my camping days to remember what I’ve cooked on a stick. And it certainly wasn’t as imaginative as this!

    • Probably the only thing I’ve ever cooked on a stick was skewered chicken or beef … never attempted a corn dog. These pickles were a real treat.

  11. We ordered some fried pickles in Memphis last summer. They could have been really good but they were cut in spears and didn’t have nearly enough breading. If I’m going to eat something deep fried, I want plenty of breading and lots of ranch dressing to dip it in. This looks so good. Going to have to try it.

  12. I was having a hard time wrapping my head around fried pickles until I saw your alluring photos Lea Ann. I’m not much of a “frying” person, but you’ve made them sound so appealing I just might have to give them a try.

  13. Now that’s worth fightin’ for : )

    Should be served before halftime, every time.

  14. Well, I got your post delivered this time, guess I needed to subscribe twice! I have never had fried pickles but have heard all the raves, they look delicious and the pictures say a thousand words….RaeDi

  15. OK, you have mentioned these pickles enough that I finally went and did a search and that alone gave me a chuckle for the day. Tire stores, card stores, Tony’s and…tada…King Soopers even! They are now on my shopping list.

    I love Matt’s book…he has certainly come up with more food to cook on a stick than I would have thought possible. And I love your shot too. But…if you want a blue weathered board…I think some stain on a piece of fencing that you’ve beaten up a bit would do the trick!

  16. sounds like an excellent book! I have been obsessing over skewers and sicks since I ran out of them a few weeks ago and every time I go to the store I somehow forget to pick them up!?!? I love your note to self…too funny! :)) I think your photo is great!

    • Oh no! Out of sicks? Too funny, and I knew what you meant. As always, thanks for the comment.

  17. make that STICKS!!!! not sicks 😛

  18. I had fried pickles for the first time this summer (how’d I go so long?!) and I loved them. With buttermilk ranch, too. So delicious.

  19. Food on a stick – some of the best I had was Korean BBQ. I think the fried pickles sound divine – crispy outside and moist, tangy inside, dunked in creamy sauce. How could it not be good?

    • I’ve never had Korean BBQ… I’m sure it would quickly win out over a corn dog. 🙂 So good to hear from you Andrea.

  20. From the number of comments that state that they’ve never heard of fried pickles, I think it’s safe to say that we may never run out of “new” ideas, even if “new” only means “new to this particular region.”

    There’s an idea … everybody rotate one geographic area clockwise, try all of their food, and we’ll swap again when you’re done.


    • I agree Steve! Great idea about the rotation. 🙂 I’m also surprised about the lack of fried pickle folks out there. Makes me feel worldly.

  21. I’ve heard of them, but never have tried them. Glad you got a copy of the book… it sounds like a great one to have.

  22. Oh, I didn’t realize that you live in Littleton. By any chance (one in a million), do you know Hal & RaeAnne Schmeda??

  23. I have never heard of fried pickles, but I have to say this looks like the perfect football game appetizer!

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