If you like pickles, this post will interest you, and you will be pleasantly surprised about how easy it is to make your own delicious pickles.
You already know that besides cooking and baking, I also enjoy gardening.
This year my garden did not do very well, but I did have lots of tomatoes, potatoes, green peppers and cucumbers. My green beans, red beets, corn, zucchini and squash were not as productive.
My sister does a lot of canning and pickling, so she encouraged me to pickle my own cucumbers.
She shared her recipe, but I did not have the Red Currant leaf or horseradish root, so I had to improvise and use the ingredients I had available.
Since I wanted to use my pickles as soon as they were ready, rather than preserving them for winter, the recipe is quite simple, and it does not require any special equipment.
If you are wondering about the type of pickling jar I was using….well….I did not have a jar large enough for this project, so I used a large glass vase……it worked perfectly fine. I sterilized it first, of course, and used a tea towel over the top, during the pickling time of about 4 days.
Pickling my own cucumbers was very easy, fun, and rewarding, especially after sampling the finished product.
- 10 medium pickling cucumbers (they are short, firm, and low on seeds)
- 10 medium garlic cloves
- 10 peppercorns
- 10 Allspice kernels
- 2-3 whole Dill weed stalks with seeds
- 2 Bay leaves
- 3 quarts of cold water
- 1/2 cup of Kosher Salt
- Prepare the pickling brine by boiling 3 quarts of water, with salt, then set aside to cool off to room temperature.
- Wash the cucumbers under running water, and brush off the small pricks found on their skin surface.
- Trim off both ends, and cut each cucumber into 4 sections, lengthwise.
- Set aside.
- Peel the garlic, and cut each clove in half, lengthwise.
- Trim off the roots of the dill weed, rinse the stalks under running water, set aside.
- Clean your jar (vase in my case) with hot, soapy water, and rinse well.
- Place half of the dill weed stalk at the bottom of the jar.
- Drop in half of the peppercorns and whole allspice.
- Place half of the cucumbers in the jar.
- Place another dill twig over cucumbers, drop in more garlic and spices, plus a bay leaf.
- Add the remaining cucumbers, cover up with another dill weed twig, and pour the brine over the cucumbers until totally submerged.
- Tie the top of the jar with a breathable material (such as a tea towel), and keep it in a dark, cool place for few days, to let them pickle.
- Once the cucumbers are ready (4 days later), you can leave them as is, or remove the dill weed, and transfer them into few smaller jars, along with the garlic, spices and pickling brine.
- Close each jar with a lid, and store them in the fridge, to extend their shelf-life.
I use pickles on sandwiches, as well as in Deviled Eggs, Potato Salad, or even in a veggie soup to enhance its flavor to an interesting light tangy taste.