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Holy Sweet Pickles!

March 24, 2011

It is pickle week! FINALLY.

I am so excited that this post is getting posted slightly before the pickles are completely finished. Which did not stop me from eating them. Ok, from eating a lot of them.

I’ve been wanting to make pickles for a long time, but was a little worried about the difficulty of the process. It turns out that the process really isn’t the hard, but the 7 day time span is a little bit daunting. Fear no more, my pickle loving friends, you can do it! The toughest part of the 7 days is waiting for the pickles to become pickles.

This recipe comes to me from the Larrick’s of Powhatan, Virginia. My sister and I spent Thanksgiving at their house and we had the sweet pickles during dinner. And they were awesome (both the Larrick’s and the pickles). The handwritten recipe card was graciously copied and passed on to me. The only change I made was that I used white vinegar and the recipe called for cider vinegar. I accidentally bought a half gallon of white vinegar because that’s what I thought the recipe was when I was at the grocery store and decided on a whim to try the pickle recipe. I figured that this would be ok because a lot of other sweet pickle recipes use white vinegar.

Sweet Pickles:

12-15 medium cucumbers (I used 6 huge ones)

3 cups white vinegar (the original recipe used cider vinegar)

6 cups sugar

2 tsp pickling spices

1 tsp salt

Directions:

Days 1-4: Wash cucumbers and place them in a large crock or whatever pot you can find that will hold them (i used disposable baking pans with lids). Pour boiling water over them and place something (like a plate) on top of them to weight them down. Drain and replace the boiling water every day for 4 days.

Day 5: On the fifth day, cut the cucumbers to the size/shape of the pickles you desire. I cut them in half length wise and then cut them into thin sections so my pickles are shaped like half circles.

In a large pot, bring vinegar, sugar and spices to boil. Pour over the cucumbers (I put all of my slices in a large Tupperware) and place in refrigerator for at least 2 days. Taste them.

Day 7: Now you can place them in jars, unsealed and keep them refrigerated, or you may can them in sterilized jars and store them in a cool, dark place.

I will probably can half of them and keep the rest in the refrigerator. That will be a post in itself, because I have never canned anything and it’s a little intimidating to me.

I also did a little experimenting: Pickled Onions! Basically, I made and extra half batch of the vinegar/sugar mixture and poured it over 2 fresh chopped onions in a separate container. They are pretty tasty with a little crunch and nice bite. I mixed them with half of the pickles when I put them in jars.

PICKLES! I cannot really explain how excited I am about making these pickles. Sweet pickles, of all things, which might be one of my favorite types of cucumber pickles (except the wasabi pickles I get at the Baltimore Farmers Market). I can’t stop eating them. Prepare for more pickle recipes in the future.

Enjoy!

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