Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A Well-Fed Newlywed: Homemade Refrigerator Pickles!

For our wedding, we received homemade dill & bread n butter PICKLES from a family friend! Adam and I were super excited to try these pickles, and after we devoured them within a couple of days, I got it into my mind that we would also set out to make pickles! How hard could it be, I wondered! Well, pretty damn easy, I found out!

I used this recipe from It Freezes Beautifully: 
For you lazy peeps, Imma just repost it here, with all of the wonderful changes I made:

Garlic - 1 clover per pint jar (2 cloves for quart jar)
Cucumbers - Enough to fill your jars - I used the pickling cucumbers from my garden.
Ball pickling spices 
Fresh dill  
Ball Pickle Crisp granules
Pickling cucumbers (smaller cucumbers with bumps on them!)

2 cups vinegar
4 cups water
3 TBSP Kosher Salt/ Sea Salt
So, funny story. I took off to Walmart with this recipe and ended up with what I thought was Pickling Salt, but it was actually Ball Pickle Crisp granules, which is not salt, so don't try to use as such! Most recipes call for pickling salt, but of course I wasn't going back to the store (because I sure did wait until 9 pm on a Saturday night to make these pickles!) Other recipes warned not to use table salt as it will make your brine cloudy. Enter the sea salt. 

Put your water, vinegar & salt into a stockpot and bring to a boil. Make sure that your salt is dissolved. (This is where recipes differ- it says that you should let it cool, but I was impatient and put it in warm).

Set your jars out on the counter and, assembly-line style, fill with the following: 
Sprigs of dill (however much you're feeling- I put 2 sprigs in the bottom and one on top) 
1/2 tsp Pickling Spice 
1-2 clove of garlic (I smashed my garlic with the back of the knife and put it in like that so the garlic juices would flow.

Chop your cucumbers (or slice, or put them in whole) on top of the pickling spice, dill & garlic. I sliced most of mine into spears, but the small ones went in whole. Put 1/4-1/8 teaspoon of the Pickle Granules on top, then ladle the brine over the cucumbers. Seal with the tops of the jar lids, and put into a sink filled with hot water. This is supposed to seal the lids even tighter to keep freshness. 
  Then, put your jars in the fridge for atleast 48 hours. I tried them somewhere around the 36 hours mark, and they still tasted like cucumbers! At 72 hours, they were perfect! I took them to work and handed them out. It was fun hearing the CRUNCH of a perfectly pickled pickle! 
These pickles should last around 6 weeks in the fridge (if they last that long!!)

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