Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Monday, August 22, 2011
He's the one on the far right of the picture.
Monday, August 15, 2011
Sweet Freezer Pickles
These have to be the easiest pickles to make. You don’t need special equipment or ingredients and in the end you get a crispy, sweet pickle that goes great with all kinds of things. Another plus is you can use any type of cucumber you can get your hands on.
You need 2 quarts of cucumbers, PEELED and thinly sliced and 1 medium onion, thinly sliced.
Sprinkle 1 tablespoon salt (table salt, canning salt or kosher salt, whatever you have on hand really).
Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 2 hours on the counter, not in the fridge.
Dump cucumbers and onions into a colander and let this drain. I was surprised at how much water the salt had pulled from the cucumbers and onion.
Mix 1 1/2 cups of sugar and 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar well and pour over cucumbers and onions.
Pack into freezer bags or plastic freezer containers. Freeze immediately. Wait 3 or 4 days before taking them out of the freezer to try.
The secret to these crispy pickles is the sugar and they’ll keep in the freezer for up to one year
Non-typical Sweet Freezer Pickles….done!
Saturday, August 13, 2011
Or as I like to call them….the best pickle in the entire world. Here’s a quick run down of how to fix these bad boys.
2 gallon of pickles.
Cut off ends, leave peels ON, cut 1/4’’to 1/2’’ thick. Dump into pickle crock.
Pour 1 gallon of cold water over top of pickles.
Press a plate down on top of the pickles until all are submerged under the water. I had a cute flower shaped plate that worked perfectly.
Now walk away and let the pickles sit under the water for 7 days. Don’t touch them at all. You might want to peek in ever so often to make sure some of the cucumbers hasn’t floated above the water or over the plate.
After 7 days you’re going to think something went terribly wrong with your cucumbers. They’re going to look like this:
Uber gross I know. Take a pair of tongs and pull the mold off. Mine came off in 3 small pieces.
Use a big colander and drain the water off the cucumbers.
My colander wouldn’t hold 2 gallons worth of cucumbers so I had to dump and drain in batches. Wash out your crock with only water then dump the drained cucumbers back in.
Boil, almost, a gallon of fresh water and dump this over pickles.
Replace the plate on top, making sure to push the cucumbers down and let this stand for 24 hours.
Drain cucumbers again.
Add them back to the crock. Bring almost a gallon of fresh water to a boil. THIS time you’re going to add Alum to the boiling water.
What is Alum? Alum is an ingredient in baking powder and is used to give crispness to pickles and maraschino cherries and to harden up gelatin. Alum is only used in a soak solution and needs to be rinsed off thoroughly before you can your pickles.
Add a heaping Tablespoon of Alum to the boiling water then pour boiling water over cucumbers. Replace your plate and let this stand for 24 hours.
Are you tired of draining and watering cucumbers by now?
Now you’re ready to drain off the cucumbers one last time. After you’ve drained them move them over into a big bowl to hold until you’ve completed the syrup below.
In a large pot bring to a boil the following:
1 1/2 pints of apple cider vinegar
12 cups of sugar (yes 12)
1 tsp celery seed
1 TBS mixed pickle spice
1/2 tsp cloves (ground or whole doesn’t matter I went with whole)
2-3’’ sticks of cinnamon broken up.
Dump your cucumbers, that look more like pickles now, back into the pickle crock. Pour on the hot syrup.
Replace your plate and let this sit for 24 hours.
After 24 hours drain the syrup off, back into the large pot and bring to a boil again. DO NOT DRAIN OFF THE SYRUP. Leave the pickles in the crock as you bring the syrup back to a boil. Pour on the boiling syrup, replace your plate and let this sit another 24 hours.
Repeat once more. So in all you should have 3-24 hour periods, back to back. of boiling your syrup and pouring back over the pickles.
ON the 4th day, drain your syrup back into the pot, bring it to a boil. As you’re waiting for your syrup to boil, take your pickles and start packing them into pint size jars. The more pickles you can pack in the better. Leave about 1/2’’ headspace so you can seal your jars properly.
Once the jars are packed and your syrup is back to a boil, ladle the syrup over the packed pickles. Put the lid and ring on your jars and turn them upside down to seal.
I’m going to gift some of these pickles so I use smaller jars as well as pint size.
German Pickles aka 7 Day Pickles…..done!
Monday, August 8, 2011
I'm in love and would like one of everything please!!!!
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
What do you do when your dad’s garden starts producing green beans like crazy?
…and he gives you 6 gallon of them?
Snap the ends off of them (or be lazy like I was and just use scissors) and any blemish. Wash them really, really, really well. Set aside 2lbs of them, you’ll use them later. But keep 4lbs for this recipes.
Place the following into your pint jars:
1/2tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp dill seed
1 garlic clove
Now cut and pack your green beans to fit into the pint mason jars. I was able to get 10 jars out of my 4lbs it my different depending on how long your beans are or how much damage they may have had or not have.
In a large pot bring 5 cups of vinegar, 5 cups of water, and 1/2 cup of salt to a boil.
Pour this hot mixture over the beans in each jar. Leave about a 1/4’’ headspace. Put lid on jars and tighten them down pretty well. Carefully place each jar into enough boiling water to cover the lids. Let them boil for 5 minutes before taking them out and allowing them to cool until all are sealed.
These are ready to eat after 5-7 days of sitting. There you have it, Dilly Beans. It’s more of a pickled green bean and after making them and trying them, I’m so not a fan!!! But Boy Toy is. So he’ll have all the Dilly Beans he can eat.
What to do with the other 2 gallons of beans? Bring some water to a rapid boil. While you’re waiting on that, snap or cut your beans to bite size. Whatever size it is that you like.
Drop them into the boiling water for 3 minutes and then quickly remove them from the water and place them in an ice water bath for 3 minutes. Once that’s done, measure them out and place them in freezer bags and pop in the freezer. Short and sweet right?
Next up…..7 Day Pickles.