Pickles

Last year I made my own pickles for the first time with a classic option of cucumbers and, for a twist, the stems of rainbow chard.  This year, I expanded my skills and tried a different method.  I also made my own sauerkraut.

Many pickle recipes (which can be applied to more than just cucumbers) call for a brine in which some combination of vinegar, water, sugar, and seasoning are heated in a saucepan, then poured over the vegetables in a jar and, possibly, combined with fresh dill.  However, a heated, brine version may be more of personal preference versus actual necessity.

This year I tried a cold method.  Many Pinterest posts share various recipes, but essentially it is a combination of water, vinegar, garlic, black pepper, other seasoning of choice, and, in my case, fresh dill and cucumbers.  I decided to play with 3 variations;

  1.  White Vinegar
  2. Apple Cider Vinegar
  3. 50/50 Apple Cider & White Vinegars

So…  which was the winner???  

Although all three options came out well and were ready for consumption within 24-48 hours, I leaned toward the white vinegar or the 50/50 combo.  Although, I certainly don’t want to discourage the Apple cider vinegar option due to the health benefits it can provide.

I’m not certain yet if this method works well for sweet pickles (“bread & butter” style), but I was happy to find that the cold method worked great for dill pickles.  It’s much easier and faster than heating up the brine in a saucepan.  My bowl below equaled three 12 oz mason jars.  Next time I will know to make more with my favorite method!

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