Thursday, July 20, 2006

Pickling


I have never canned cucumbers before, but I picked all these in the morning, so I thought I'd give it a try. I have canned strawberries, beans, and hot pepper jelly in the past, so I had all the supplies necessary. We're having some unusual hot weather here, so I waited till evening to get started.

For the first time, I have actually coordinated the dill to be ready to harvest with the cucumbers. This is a milestone for me.


I decided to go with the one part vinegar to one part water formula. This is the minimum ratio you should use to be safe. I noticed the Dilly Beans I made, were made with 2 parts vinegar to 1 part water, and they were really tart.

I only wanted to make one batch (didn't want to be up all night). I fit 4 quart size jars, and 3 pint size jars in my canner. I used 7 1/2 cups vinegar and 7 1/2 cups water, and had enough left over to probably fill one more pint size jar.

I used all the cucumbers in the photo. I probably could have stuffed the quart size jars with more cucumbers. The pint size jars held about 1 cucumber each sliced in chips. The quart size jars could have held 2 cucumbers each, quartered lengthwise.

I had a spice packet for making dill pickles that I added to the quart size jars, to which I also added fresh dill and garlic. I added salt, dill and garlic for flavor into the pint size jars. I thought about putting in a jalapeno pepper, but didn't. Maybe next time. I processed my pickles in the hot water bath for 18 minutes, being sure the jars were covered by about an inch of water.

It really wasn't too much work. I knew from previous experience, I like working in small quantities. So one batch was just right, didn't kill me. I started around 8 PM and was done I think by 10:30. It just takes so long for the big pot of water to boil.

These web pages were very helpful:

Colorado State University Cooperative Extension

Foti Farm

FYI - Last night Whole Foods had a beautiful display of gourmet pickled items in 15 oz jars, on sale for $6.99 each (reg $7.99). They had green beans, cucumbers and beets in small jars. They looked really good, like the ones we make ourselves at home. I'm going to try pickling my own beets next time, they had ingredients like brown sugar and cinnamon, pickled in apple cider vinegar.

6 Comments:

At 1:16 PM, Blogger bracero said...

I love dilly beans. Can you make relish with the ingredients you harvest from your garden?

 
At 4:02 PM, Blogger snappy said...

Tell us later how they taste pickled cucumbers.Have you forgivven the chicken for demolishing the salad bed?

 
At 6:16 AM, Blogger steven said...

Nice looking pickles there.

 
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