Ever had homemade pickles? Aren't they way superior to store bought? I think so! I started making my own pickles a few years ago and I don't think I'll ever go back. The great thing about it, is you can pretty much pickle anything. If you have a garden that is starting too brim with fresh veggies, take advantage of the abundance and do some pickling!
Here is the most very basic brine recipe. You can add anything to it you like to season it or flavour it in different ways or leave it just as is.
Click on the full post for the complete recipe and instructions to make your own pickled mini cucumbers. Alternatives and additions are listed at the end of the post to give you some ideas!
4 cups water
2 cups vinegar
1/3 + 1 Tbsp pickling salt
6 cloves of garlic, minced (optional)
I found this bag at a regular grocery store, right by the jars of spices. It was way down on the bottom shelf.
Alternatively, you can sterilize your jars in the oven (lids off) at 250F for 20 minutes.
Don't be afraid to really pack the jars full!
Sealed jars will last a couple months either in a cool cellar or the fridge. Once opened, they should be kept in the refrigerator.
Variations for the brine (not just for cucumbers);
- Do half white vinegar, half cider vinegar for a different taste (yum!)
- Add bunches of fresh dill into the jars when filling them up
- Use chili peppers, fresh or flakes to add zip to your pickles
- Pepper corns, celery seed, allspice and mustard seed are all classic additions
- Cinnamon sticks and or whole cloves. I know right?
- You can add white sugar if you want to make the brine sweet
Other things that can be pickled;
Asparagus, carrots, cauliflower, onion, peppers, beets, radishes, cabbage, celery, green tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, okra, mushrooms, hard boiled eggs, olives, brussel sprouts, green beans, garlic, ginger.... the list goes on.
That's pickling 101. Class dismissed!