Monday, September 7, 2009

Dill Pickles

Homemade dill pickles...just like the ones my mother used to make...are on my 'to do' list every summer. There's just something about homemade dills that can't be found on the storeshelf! This is my mom's recipe...the same pickles I grew up with.


Ingredients:
  • 10 pounds of pickling cukes (yield about 8 jars)
  • 5 cups white vinegar used for pickling
  • 13 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup pickling salt…coarse
  • garlic pieces (peeled and cut in half)…two pieces per jar
  • fresh dill
  • small dried red chili peppers…one or two pieces for each jar

Method:
  1. Wash cucumbers well...and leave in tub of cold water while packing jars.
  2. Mix vinegar, water, sugar and the salt in a large pot. Stir the mixture well. Heat to a rapid boil on medium-high….then keep simmering while filling jars.
  3. Prepare wide-mouth 1-quart jars. In each jar, put 1 piece of garlic, one head of dill, two small chili peppers and then enough cucumbers to fill the jar. Then add one more garlic piece and another sprig of dill.
  4. Fill jars slowly with the hot brine and seal (being sure to clean all residue from the top of the rim of the jar first).
  5. Place the lidded jars in boiling water bath for about 15 minutes…water in canner should cover the tops of the jars.
  6. The pickles should be stored in a cool place for two months before serving. (So they say...I’m not sure we ever waited that long!)

    *If your water is hard, high in mineral content or has chlorine added, use bottled water.
    ** Pack the cukes into the jars really tight…they shrink as they are processed.

If you like a little zip to your pickles...be generous with the red chili peppers!


Enjoy!