It's about time someone put their pickle in the Kool-Aid.
This is not a sexual innuendo -- get your mind out of the gutter, folks -- but real talk. If you have a dill pickle, a glass of Kool-Aid and a want for a sweet and sour, the natural thing to do is to steep said pickle into the electrically-colored sweet Kool-Aid drink. That's what happened in the Delta region of Mississippi, and it's how the Kool-Aid pickle came to exist.
Kool-Aid pickles, sometimes referred to as Koolickles, are an unnaturally colored pickle -- usually red, as that's the most popular Kool-Aid "flavor" -- that have been slowly creeping their way out of the Delta from whence they were born. Exactly where and when they started is unknown, nor is it of particular importance. What is important, however, is what a good idea it is.
Why in the world did it take so long to come to be? Kool-Aid has been around for almost a full century now, and pickles have been around for millennia. People have just been slow on the uptake.
The Kool-Aid pickle isn't the first iteration of a hacked sweet and sour pickle. A couple generations ago, the craziest among us used to jab a peppermint stick in the center of a dill pickle and let it dissolve to get the sweet and sour effect. After that, there was the straight dipping of the pickle into the Kool-Aid powder. And in the last generation, finally, the pickle gets a Kool-Aid bath for that quick sweet and sour effect. Plus, it turns neon red, which is an awesome bonus.
Now that we're all up to speed on the history of hacked sweet and sours, let's get to the heart of the matter: how do you eat a Koolickle if you don't live in the Delta south? Easy, you make one. It requires absolutely no pickling skills, just a gallon of dill pickles, a pound of sugar and two packets of Kool-Aid (the flavor is up to you). Cut the pickles in half, add them to a jar with their brine, sugar, and Kool-Aid. Mix it all together and let sit in your fridge for a week. That's it. (If you need a more thorough explanation, let food blogger I Believe I Can Fry walk you through the process.)
Eat it as a snack and revel in your oddly-colored, yet great-tasting pickle. It's a flavor of the present-day South you can partake in no matter where you live.
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