Monday, September 26, 2011
Canning Cucumbers, Part Two: Dill Pickle Spears
I may not be too fond of sweet pickles, but I love a good dill pickle. There are a variety of ways to make dill pickles -- fresh pack, brined, cooked, canned, refrigerated, lacto-fermented. For my foray into pickle making, I decided to try a simple fresh pack recipe.
Although this recipe doesn't produce the crisp dill pickles I like most (I'm determined to make this recipe next year), they are still delicious and work well in a variety of recipes and on a hamburger or in a sandwich.
Fresh Pack Dill Pickles - from The Ball Blue Book of Preserving
Yield: about 7 pints or 3 quarts
8 lbs. 4- to 6-inch cucumbers, cut lengthwise into halves (we cut ours into quarters)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canning salt (can be found in the canning section in your local grocery store)
1 quart vinegar
1 quart water
3 tablespoons mixed pickling spices (also can be found in the canning section)
Green or dry dill (1 head per jar)
Cheesecloth and kitchen string or a store bought spice bag (For instructions on how to make a spice bag, check out this link -- it's really easy.)
Wash cucumbers; drain. Combine sugar, salt, vinegar, and water in a large saucepot. Tie spices in a spice bag; add spice bag to vinegar mixture. Simmer for 15 minutes. Pack cucumbers into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Put one head of dill in each jar.
Allow 4-6 weeks for these pickles to cure and develop the best flavor.
Have you ever made pickles? What's your favorite kind -- to eat and/or make? Any recipes/links I should know about?
Note: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.