Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Dill Pickles!

I'm ready to make my eighth jar of dill pickles.
The cucumber vines are reaching the end of their productivity.

These little cukes are the ideal size for pickles
if you don't let them grow into fat dirigibles lol.
Which I did. With a few. Some of them turned into
fat gourd shapes with a bulbous bottom.
No matter, they all go into the pickle jar and are just as tasty.

No matter how many pickles I make, they won't go to waste.
We seem to have a fondness for anything containing vinegar in this house.
Pickle anything, and we will eat it!

The one thing we don't agree on is sweet versus dill/sour.
Sweet is my favorite, but hubby won't touch a sweet pickle.

Yes, that's a grape leaf at the bottom of the jar.
I read that a grape leaf will help the cukes retain their crunch,
and since my backyard is home to at least 4 million grape leaves,
I went out and picked the finest ones I could.
The pickles are quite crunchy, and now I am afraid 
to leave out the grape leaf. So one (or two) go into every jar.
I figure it can't hurt :)

This is my entry for The August Break.
I love the idea of a photo a day in the month of August.
I hope I do better than I did in 29 Faces.
All I can do is try.
I'm sure most days I will post only a photo.

If you've never made pickles before and want to try it,
I think this recipe makes a pretty tasty pickle.
These are refrigerator pickles, which don't require
a complicated canning procedure. (At least it's 
complicated to me, because I've never canned anything
before, and don't have any of the equipment.)

These will keep for several months. Although I can't attest to that
without a doubt because they never last that long here!
All you need are good-size jars with tight lids.
Mason jars are great, but so are old pickle jars.
Just use the 'sanitize' option on your dishwasher if you have one,
and the jars are fine to use. Otherwise, make sure they are very clean.

Refrigerator Dill Pickles

Ingredients (per jar)

2/3 cup white vinegar

1 cup water

1 tablespoon coriander seeds

1.5 tablespoons salt
(These do not turn out overly salty, but you can cut down the 
salt a bit to 1 tablespoon)

1 tablespoon sugar
(don't worry, this will not make your pickles sweet)

1 tablespoon whole peppercorns

3 cloves garlic
(I slice each one in half)

8 sprigs fresh dill

1 grape leaf (optional)

3-4 pickling cucumbers
sliced lengthwise into quarters 

Bring the first six ingredients to a boil in a non-reactive pot. 
Remove from heat. I let it cool just slightly, 
but there's no need to cool completely.

Meanwhile, put the last 4 ingredients into a clean jar. 
I like to put the grape leaf, garlic, and dill in the bottom 
of the jar and then add the cucumbers. Tightly pack the cucumbers,
put as many as you can into the jar.

Pour the brine mixture over the cucumbers (I use a 
small ladle to help prevent spilling). Make sure the brine 
completely covers the cukes. Tap the jar on the counter top 
to release air bubbles and add more liquid if necessary.

Cover jar with a napkin or clean towel and leave on counter top
until just about cool. Then screw on the lid and put in fridge.

Ready to eat in 24 hours. But, if you taste one within minutes,
it is already pickle-y! Don't do that though, they really need at least 12 hours!
Remember, these must be kept refrigerated, and will keep for 2-3 months.

Happy August! 
(Where has the summer gone?)


  1. Lovely cukes! Bread and butter pickles are my fave!

    1. Those are my favorites too, Dianne. Love the sweetness! Haven't made any yet, but I plan to :)

  2. Thanks for the recipe, I'll have to try it since we are getting quite a few cukes.

  3. Oh yum! I'll have to try that recipe on our next batch of cucumbers. Jack just planted more a few weeks ago. They grew so well that we had sliced cucumbers, tomato's and onion salad sprinkled with Italian dressing and feta cheese most evenings. Yum!


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