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Dill Pickles

Ingredients:

6 to 8 pounds very fresh pickling cucumbers, washed thoroughly

Large handful of fresh dill

4 (or more) cloves of garlic, peeled

For the brine: (this is enough brine for 4 quarts/litres of pickles):

8 cups cold fresh water

8 tablespoons pickling salt (not table salt)

Prepare pickles- trim the stem off and the end of the cucumber where the flower was. We don’t want any flower bits left and just a slight trim on both ends does the trick. This slight trim also allows for the brine to soak into the cucumber speedily.

Salt- use pickling salt. Typical table salt contains iodine and other ingredients that may affect the outcome of your pickles.

Other spices: We prefer our pickles with simple flavors. The video link below does give various spices that you may try, if you wish.

Water- we prefer to use distilled or filtered water for this recipe since the chlorine in tap water may be noticeable in your pickles.

Brine: dissolve salt in water, heating it slightly if needed. Water should be at room temperature (21-25 C. is ideal) when poured on your cucumbers.

Pack your Jars: Place a flowering dill head or 6-10 inches of dill stalk including plenty of leaves in the bottom of your jars. Add one or two cloves of garlic to suit your taste. Some people like to add a fresh grape leaf in the jar to encourage very crisp pickles. I have done this, and other times I have left it out. Either way these pickles are great! Add your prepared cucumbers into the jar. Pack them in fairly snuggly, using smaller ones wedged across the neck of the jar to keep all cucumbers fully submerged during the fermenting stage. Fill jar with your prepared brine to cover all the cucumbers. Place lid and screw band on the jar leaving the lid a bit loose. Keeping the lid loose will allow gas to escape as pickles ferment.

Ferment: at room temperature (21-25 C. is ideal) for about a week. Check pickles every day as these can ferment fast. They are done when you like the taste. We like them at about 2-3 day ferment. If you go too far, they start to get soft, and the inside gets hollow. Be sure to keep the brine level topped up to cover the cucumbers fully. If you should need more brine for topping up the jars: the ratio is 1 tablespoon of pickling salt per cup of water The brine will likely turn cloudy during fermenting- this is normal. When they are done when you like the taste. If you prefer a more sour pickle allow a day or two more.

Refrigerate: when done to your liking, refrigerate your pickles. Use them within a few months.

 

Here is a video link that you may find helpful:

http://foodwishes.blogspot.ca/2015/08/homemade-dill-pickles-naturally.html