25 July 2012
Garlic dill pickles!
There was an entire box of cucumbers in the sort-out bins at the farmer's market this weekend. What better opportunity for pickle-making?
Ok, if I grew my own cucumbers and was suddenly drowning in all the harvest, that would be a better opportunity, yes, but I didn't do that this year. Although I suppose I could start some vines and go ahead--we still have a good two months of serious heat to go. Hey, why not? I did it last year at about this time.
Obviously these are not pickling cucumbers. Oh well; let's see what kind of results I get.
I used the garlic dill pickle recipe from Food in Jars.
These were very easy. I soaked my cucumbers in water for several hours, dried them, and cut them into fat chunks. I stuffed the pieces into four sterilized regular-mouth pint jars with dill seed, red pepper flakes, peppercorns, and a couple cloves of garlic each. I made a half recipe of brine by boiling vinegar, water, and pickling salt, and poured it over the cucumbers, filling to 1/2 inch headspace. I wiped the rims, lidded and ringed the jars with sterilized equipage, stuck them in a rack, and processed them in the boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Then I let them cool overnight on a cooling rack on the kitchen counter.
I'm having kind of a hard time not just popping open a jar and eating a few of these, but you're supposed to let canned pickles age for at least a couple weeks, so. I will be good!
It became obvious a few days later, when I was sitting around thinking about how I should make a batch of dilly beans, that I should have made both recipes at once and concentrated the canning heat and vinegar brine into one two-hour session. Oh well--now I have a better plan for next time.