August 6, 2011

Fridge Pickles

In the last couple of weeks multiple friends have been kind enough to give me pounds of vegetables from their gardens. I have been using the squash to make pasta (post to come later in the week) and the tomatoes to make pasta sauce and a tomato tart. However, my family can only eat so many fresh cucumbers, so I decided to make fridge pickles.

Fridge pickles are very easy to prepare and take little effort. Everyone I know has different spices which they like to include in their pickles or a particular dill packet mix which is their favorite. The recipe I choose to follow involved the following spices:
  • dill weed
  • dill seed
  • mustard seed 
  • garlic
  • red pepper if I want to make them a little kick
I used a 50/50 water vinegar ratio and made the pickles in wide mouth jars. I had five pounds of pickles total, which I sliced into spears and soaked in boiling water with a teaspoon of turmeric for three hours. Then I added the spices to the jars, added the cucumbers to the jars, boiled the vinegar, water, sugar and canning salt and then poured into the jars. Since I don't own a dishwasher I always boil my jars and lids for ten minutes before using. Stick in the fridge and your done. I normally wait about five days before tasting, to make sure the full flavor of the pickles comes out.

Fridge pickles are a great way to save money, especially since my two boys eat a large amount of pickles. They are easy to prepare and you need no previous canning experience since they don't need to be water bathed. Pickles are a great way to use extra garden veggies before they go bad and taste delicious.
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