August 09, 2010

Triple Dill Pickles

4 lb pickling cucumbers, quartered length-wise
3 cups water
2 3/4 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup pickling salt
6 teaspoons yellow mustard seed
6 tablespoons dill seed
3 teaspoons dillweed
6 bay leaves
6 cloves garlic
1/2 cup minced dill

Bring the water, vinegar and salt to a boil. Prep wide-mouth pint lids/jars. Place 1 bay leaf, 1 teaspoon mustard seed, 1 tablespoon dill seed, and 1/2 teaspoon dillweed in each jar.

Add the cucumber spears and one clove garlic to each jar. Evenly divide the dill among the jars. Pour in the vinegar mixture. Close the jars and process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath. Allow to sit 2 weeks before eating.

Yield: about 6 pints

Note: A great source for canning information is the Blue Book guide to preserving. I highly recommend it for learning how to can. Here is a bunch of other canning books and equipment I find useful.

My thoughts:
Pickles! I sent my husband to buy pickling cucumbers the other day and he came back with 15 lbs. He helped cut up the cucumbers (thank goodness!) and I ended up canning 22 jars of pickles in three varieties. These are the first ones I've opened. To my delight they stayed pretty crisp and have wonderful but not overpowering dill flavor. I was a little worried that using dillweed, dill and dill seeds would end up being too much but it really wasn't. There was just a depth of flavor that one normally doesn't find in a pickle. I hope the other ones I canned turned out just as well! After a while, I felt like I was living in a pickle factory and I think I developed "pickle wrist" from trying to really pack the cucumbers in there. But it really wasn't difficult at all, just a little time consuming.