Let me start this post by admitting that my usual martini is made with gin and slightly ‘dirty,’ which means a little olive brine is added to the mix. I prefer a minimum of two big, stuffed olives. Bleu cheese is my preferred stuffing but I’m not particular. Recently I have developed a new recipe which is jostling for martini supremacy. I dub it the Half Sour Pickletini.
A bit of history. I am very fond of the half sour Russian pickles that are found in hand-packed containers at Global Foods Market in Kirkwood, MO. They can be found in a refrigerated case at the back of the store, not far from the deli counter. As I mentioned earlier, I gravitate toward the gin martini but I have long been aware of the Russian fondness for eating pickles while quaffing vodka so I decided that perhaps the two would play nicely in the same glass. I can tell you now that they do.
I started by dropping a few half sour pickle slices into a chilled martini glass. Then I made a straightforward martini by filling a steel shaker with ice, splashing in a bit of vermouth and four ounces of Absolut (cheaper vodka will do in a pinch) and shaking like the dickens until it got uncomfortably cold. That last bit is an important step–you have to shake for at least thirty seconds.
I poured the icy mixture into the pre-pickled glass and voila: the Pickletini was born! If you can’t get the aforementioned half sour variety, I think any Polish style dill pickle would suffice.