Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pickles!

I have no talent for growing cucumbers. I have tried numerous times now with the same results each time. I get a few oddly shaped ones in the beginning of the season, then the vines wither and seem like they are going to die. They manage to struggle back to life and flower but none of the flowers get fertilized and the little baby cukes just shrivel up and die on the vine (yes I know I could hand pollinate them, but I'm too lazy for that). So I end up buying my cucumbers from the farmers market. It's not exactly what I hope for, but at least I know where they come from. I found some decent looking cukes today and decided to make pickles. I also picked up a bunch of jalapenos since the five plants I currently have in the garden are acting like freeloaders and only putting out small peppers on a very irregular basis. It has only recently gotten hot enough for them to even start growing, let alone produce fruit so I'm letting them slide for now. I was glad to find things to pickle and declared today to be pickling day in our house!

Cucumbers in ice water for a couple hours before slicing and packing them in jars.
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Sliced and ready to go. I lopped off the ends to make them fit into pint jars and then sliced the ends to make a pint of sliced pickles as well.
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Jalapenos also sliced and ready (remember to wear gloves when working with hot peppers!).
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My prep station for the cucumbers. I made basic dill pickles and put some slivers of jalapeno in a few jars since I like my pickles with a little kick. The main ingredients are vinegar, water, salt, garlic, dill weed, and dill seed. I also used some pickle crisp (the white stuff in the jar) since I have heard good things about it from other people. I'm hoping it will do a good job of keeping my pickles crisp and tasty.
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The jalapenos didn't need a prep station. I just mixed all the ingredients in a pot, brought it to a boil, the poured it over the jalapenos that I packed in the jars. The ingredients for the jalapenos were vinegar, water, salt, olive oil, and pickling spice. Super easy.

Finished jars. I got five pints of dills and four and a half pints of jalapenos. I can't wait to see how they turn out!
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I swear that one of the these days I will get some decent pictures up here. I have my camera back, but since our computer was stolen when my husband's truck got broken into while on vacation, I can't transfer the pictures. The computer I am currently using doesn't have a handy little place to plug in the memory card and we can't find the cord for the camera. Someday I will remember to pick up a new cord so that people will be able to see that I can actually get a subject in focus when I'm not stuck using my phone for a camera.

4 comments:

Jennifer said...

Nice Canning... I think your pics. are great!

Becky's Barnyard said...

They look great. They look so pretty in the jars. I remember my mother making pickles; this is just not for me.

The Park Wife said...

I think your pictures look great, makes me sad I did not make picles this year.

As far as your lack of cukes, do you have squash bugs? maybe they are sucking the root and not giving the plant what it needs to produce.

I am so glad you found me through the New York Times, it looks like we are two peas in a pod!

I am on my way to read more of your blog!
The Park Wife

Potterwatch's Peeps said...

I'm not sure what the issue is for my cukes. Everything else that is planted nearby is doing fine. I haven't had any trouble with my zucchini, pumpkins, or acorn squash... just the cucumbers. They are even planted right near by beehive so you would think they would get pollinated well but the bees completely ignore them.