3 thoughts on “Cucumber

  1. Gabriel says:

    What kind of pickles are you making (dill, sweet, bread-and-butter, etc)?

    I’m just now harvesting my “Boston Pickle” cucumbers and … it’s finally time to start looking for a recipe!

  2. Right now, we’re doing dill because we have to harvest our dill before it’s no longer any good. I don’t have the exact recipe in front of me, but the basics are as follows:

    1. Soak the cukes in ice water for 2+ hours (helps them stay crisper over time).
    2. Sterilize jars/lids.
    3. In each jar, put a clove or two of garlic and a sprig of dill flowers.
    4. Stuff jars with cucumbers.
    5. Add another clove of garlic and a sprig of dill leaves.
    6. Pour brine in to within a centimeter or so of the top of the jar (make sure cucumbers are submerged).
    7. Try to pop any big bubbles (these are a bigger problem with bread and butter than with dill).
    8. Put lids and rims on and boil fully submerged for 15 minutes.
    9. Listen for the satisfying popping sound of jars sealing.
    10. Be patient and don’t open them for eight weeks.

    We’ve tried slicing cucumbers to get more per jar (when using whole cucumbers, you wind up with lots of unused space), but they turn to mush, so this year we’ve tried two things. One is that we’re harvesting early so that we have small cucumbers and can make better use of our space (this is the first year we’ve grown our own, and we’ve been at the mercy of our sources in previous years). The other thing we’re experimenting with is adding a little salt to the ice bath to pull moisture out (so that it’s replaced by the brine). The salt trick is part of the process for bread and butter pickles, which don’t get nearly as mushy. So we do have a few jars of dills this year that are sliced but salted, and we’ll see in about seven weeks how those turned out.

    We’ve also got some peppers we’re going to slip into a couple of jars this week to spice them up a bit.

    The bread and butter recipe is a good bit more involved, and I can’t recall the recipe at the moment. Maybe I’ll post that when we’re done with dill and start the process again. It’s a major production (but the upside is that you can eat them right away, and our recipe is really tasty).

  3. Gabriel says:

    Ah, good point on the “mushy” pickles.

    I had planned on hacking mine up to fit, just as you mentioned but… Sounds like I need another plan.


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