Dill, baby, dill: The pickle sandwich is a thing of beauty

Gif: Allison Corr
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The internet: What a place! It is a fount of strange and wonderful ideas, from Cheddar Bay Biscuit-crusted fried chicken to queso using cream of chicken soup. It is here on the internet, about a month ago, that I saw a sandwich with dill pickles in place of bread. Ideas like this are typically good for a “like” or a retweet, nothing more, as many of these suggestions are more novel than practical.


But I kept thinking about the pickle sandwich. I played it out in my head: You’ve got that baguette-like shape. You’ve got the crunch. The neutrality of bread is replaced by pickle’s dill-and-brine. It could actually work!

Over the weekend, I headed to my closest Jewish delicatessen, Kaufman’s in Skokie, Illinois, and ordered my favorite sandwich on the menu: The New York Special, with corned beef, chopped liver, sliced red onions, and horseradish. I also picked up pickles from the in-store barrel (I had a choice of “new” and “old” and bought some of the latter, which have been brined longer).


Back home, I sliced the pickles lengthwise and transferred the corned beef and chopped chicken liver from the bread. The whole affair was messy, hard to pick up without fillings spilling out, so I inserted two toothpicks to hold everything in place.

Hoo-boy, was this great. As predicted, there was that satisfying crunch, and wouldn’t you know it, dill pickles pair really well with corned beef and creamy chicken liver. The sandwich was a bit wetter than I’m used to, but this can be mitigated wrapped in a few layers of butcher paper.

This is essentially a carb-free sandwich, a souped-up lettuce wrap, a Jewish deli staple cranked up to 11. Unlike most internet fads, I can see myself adopting this going forward.

Illustration for article titled Dill, baby, dill: The pickle sandwich iis/i a thing of beauty
Photo: Kevin Pang

Kevin Pang was the founding editor of The Takeout, and director of the documentary For Grace.

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Okay, but... how about we slice the pickle part way and stuff a hot dog in it.