Welcome back to 31 Days of Gifts Wrapped in Glass! I have had a nice little vacation in the middle of this series, I am refreshed and eager to get down to business!
Today’s gift is Fermented Dill Pickles!
I actually have made two batches of these pickles, the first ones we ate immediately, and I must say they were very popular around here!
The second batch has just now become ready for sampling. We had quite a bumper crop of cukes considering how dry it’s been here. I am pleased that our basement shelves are full of crunchy pickles being stored for the winter.
Here’s what you will need:
3/4 cup kosher salt
3 tsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. black peppercorns
3 Tbsp. coriander seeds ( I couldn’t find seeds, and ended up using powder instead)
18 dried chilies, such as chilies de arbol (found in the Mexican isle of the grocery store)
3/4 cup white vinegar
9 lbs. medium cukes
30 gloves of garlic, crushed
10 sprigs of dill
6 large mouth quart jars
pieces of cheese cloth or burlap cut in squares to fit over the top of the jars
rubber bands or string
canning pot, ladle, and funnel
Cover the jars with water and bring to a boil. Add 1 cup white vinegar to the water bath if you have hard water to discourage water deposit on the outside of the jars. Sterilize the jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile bring 3/4 cup water, salt, sugar, peppercorns, coriander and chilies to a boil in a large sauce pan. Remove from heat, add 4 1/2 cups each of water and vinegar, stir to combine, let cool.
Wash and prepare cukes by cutting 1″ off of either end. You can slice them for hamburger style pickles or cut them longways for chunky dills. Remove jars from water bath. Put 5 small sprigs of dill in each jar, or you can use 2 tsp. dried dill in each. Add 5 cloves of garlic per jar, along with several of the chili peppers that you removed from the brine (depending on how hot you like your pickles). Fill the jars with the cukes next, being careful not to touch the inside of the jar. Pack the jars snugly, but do not over stuff them or they will not ferment well.
Ladle the brine through the funnel into the jars, leaving 1/4″ head space. Cover the jar with the cheese cloth or burlap and secure with the rubber band or string. Store in a cool dark place for 2-4 days. Use the shorter time for a “half sour” and the longer amount for a “full sour”. After fermenting, remove the burlap and cover with a canning jar lid before refrigerating. The pickles do not need to be processed again for storage. They will keep refrigerated for up to 2 months.
The first batch I made disappeared after two weeks. I am sure that you won’t have any problem storing these pickles because they won’t last nearly that long!
I am making an additional batch of these pickles to give away as gifts. They are a great hostess gift for the holidays! Turkey sandwiches simply must have pickles on the side, I am sure you will agree!
More gifts to come so stop by again soon!