So I’ve made (or almost made – I’ve got two more jars to fill with pickling solution, and then I need to process everything) six pints (2-cup jars) of garlic-dill cucumber pickles this year.
I may or may not make more, depending on (a) if I can find pickling cukes on discount, and (b) if I can dig up more pint jars out of the recesses of my work room. (Honestly, I don’t think that’ll be hard, but there you go).
I used a very similar recipe to last year‘s (only this year, I nearly forgot to put the garlic in. Ack!) with a few adjustments, mostly based on what I had available in the house.
Slice cucumbers into spears
Layer in a large tupperware, covering each layer with a thin-to-moderate dusting of salt, until you run out of cucumbers
Cover everything with water
Put a plate or two on top of the cukes to keep them submerged
Put the lid on the tupperware
Put the whole thing in the fridge for At Least THREE Days
After the cukes have brined sufficiently, take them out of the fridge, drain off the liquid, give them a good rince, and proceed to pickle them.
(These go in the jar along with the cucumbers and pickling solution in order to impart flavour and general deliciousness).
For each two-cup jar, add:
1 medium-small clove fresh (as in: not cured; it’s stronger) garlic
1 tbsp fresh (not dried) dill weed
1 medium-large dried bay leaf
1 tsp whole mustard seeds
1 tsp whole black pepper corns
0.25 tsp dill seed
1 medium-small fresh grape leaf
Add extras to pint jars, then stuff the pint jars as full as you can with the cucumber spears.
4 C white wine vinegar
2 C water
1.5 tbsp salt
Combine and bring to a rolling boil, then pour into the stuffed pint jars.
Run a knife/spatula/something around the inside of the jar in order to get the air bubbles out, then top up with pickling solution as needed.
NOTE: The amount of pickling solution you will need really IS dependent on how well you stuff your jars full of cucumbers. You want to stuff them really tight. In my case, I had too many cukes for just five well-stuffed pints, but not quite enough to do six. So I pulled one cucumber spear out of each pint jar and went with more loosely-stuffed pickles.
This means that I needed more pickling solution than expected.
I actually made my pickling solution in three batches, which totalled the amount listed above, because I didn’t want to make too much and have left-over pickling solution.
Which I wound up having anyway, but what can you do? 😉
Anyway. That’s this year’s recipe for garlic-dill cucumber pickles.
I’ll most likely wind up using my left-over pickling solution on a (tiny) jar of pickled radishes.
Next up: Black Forest Chocolate-Cherry Spread. (Yes, really!) 😀
Meliad the Birch Maiden.
 I honestly don’t remember when I did that grocery run, but I know they may have been in the fridge for nearly a week. I’m not too worried about it, mind you. As long as they’re submerged in the brine, they’re fine (see: lactofermentation). In this case, I used a little bit less salt, but brined the pickles for longer. We’ll see what it gives me. 🙂
 These will both help keep the pickles crunchy (due to the tanins), though the bay leaf will also add extra flavour. Not sure about the grape leaf on that one.
 As you’ll see, I wound up going with more loosely-packed pickles this year. It’s not what I wanted, but I had too many for five pints and too few for six without letting things be a bit loosey-goosey. They’ll taste fine and keep fine, but it was… an inefficient use of vinegar, let’s say. 😉
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