August 23, 2012
Spiced Dill Pickles!
Pickle-making is probably going to be part of my fall routine from now on. It's so fun! The part where you have to do any work is so quick and uncomplicated. I've done it a few times, but today I realized that it's even more fun if you have a really big jar for them to float in.
I've always loved pickles. Well, mostly. I like them sour, dilly, crunchy, salty.. but I don't much like them when they're too fakey-vinegary. This method of pickle-making is vinegar free, heat free, and really good for you! Until last year, I didn't know pickles could be so healthy, but when you make them the old-fashioned way (lacto-fermented), they are full of probiotic goodness.
(And I actually love vinegar, don't get me wrong.)

I went to the farmer's market this morning, with a plan. I knew there would be cucumbers galore and ever since we got home from camp I've been itching to ferment something! So I picked up 20 baby cukes for $2.00. I asked my sister-in-law for some grape leaves from near her house. I washed out my big sauerkraut jar and ran to the store for some pickling spice. I had planned on making my own blend of spices, but this made it really fast and easy. And it smelled so yummy.

I washed the cucumbers really well (and used some homemade fruit & veggie wash), scrubbed them, and left them to crisp up in some icy water until I could finish the job (during nap time). When I came back, I peeled a few cloves of garlic and put them in the bottom of my jar with 2 T. of pickling spice, and a spoonful of dried dill.

Then I packed the cucumbers into the jar, poured salty water over everything and latched it shut. They're sitting on my counter where I can admire them. And there they'll stay for 3-5 days, until they taste tangy and perfect. I think this time I might make relish with some of mine.

Spiced Dill Pickles
To a gallon glass jar, add: 3 cloves of peeled garlic, 2 T. dill, and 2 T. pickling spice. Pack in washed, scrubbed cucumbers as tightly as you can. Stir 2 tablespoons of sea salt into 1 quart of water and pour over cucumbers. Depending on how full your jar is, you will probably need to repeat this step with another quart of salt water (using the same ratio; 2 tablespoons of salt per quart) to completely cover the cucumbers. I like to place one of the largest cucumbers at the top and kind of wedge it in underneath the brine to make sure everything stays under the water level. Cover tightly and leave at room temperature for 3-5 days (less time in summer, more in winter), or until the brine is bubbly and cloudy and the pickles are to your taste. Store finished pickles in fridge and enjoy for months. 

How about you guys, do you like pickles? Do you get pickles on your burger? I usually don't, but I should try it again soon. 


5 comments:

Lindsey said...

Oh yum! I just started lacto-fermenting... I have two jars of carrot sticks on the counter right now. I wonder if these would work with whey if I reduced the salt?

Chiara said...

Wow, I really like pickles. What are the spices in the mix? Did you make the fruit and veggie wash yourself? Can you share the recipe?

Anneliese said...

i'm ready to try this! but one, really obvious, but i don't know the answer, question. do you literally mean grape or oak leaves like from the vine/tree?

Christine said...

I'm not a fan of pickles on burgers but I love pickles by themselves - these look so tangy and delicious!

emily o. said...

Yum! We love pickles in our house (my husband is a little addicted to them). Can't wait to try these.

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about this blog

Hello, I'm Summer. A people-loving introvert whose hope and life is in Jesus. His promises are my passion and my ministry is homelife. This blog is a place for me to write about everyday things. Especially food. My favorite thing to do is sit around a table, lingering over a long meal with good conversation. I live with my husband and our 2 littles. We like blizzards, thrifting, grammar, guacamole, cheerful hearts, nice manners, good movies, and making simple, real, nutrient-dense food.

"If Christ be anything, He must be everything."
-C.H. Spurgeon

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