These are washed cucumbers, Mrs. Wages pickling lime, my cutter, a big plastic bowl. You can use glass or stainless steel, but not aluminum.
My bowl holds a gallon and a half. So, 1 gallon of water, 1/2 cup lime.
Dissolve. Careful! Lime can be caustic.
On the left is the blossom end. On the right is the stem end. However you cut your cukes, remove the blossom end first.
I like to crinkle cut mine in big slices. You can quarter or use whole. Your choice.
Drop sliced cukes into the lime water mixture, add ice, refrigerate. I will add a few more after we pick this evening. They can soak up to 24 hours, but as little as 2 hours is fine.
Day 2. Adding freshly picked cucumbers to the lime soak. Had to skim off a little water so as not to overflow. The advantage to doing it this way is that every cucumber went into the soak at less than 1 hour from picking.
Stir them up to make sure they are all getting in contact with the lime soak.
It is full. Iced and back in the fridge. Will rinse these this afternoon and soak in ice water overnight. I will start another soak for tomorrow’s harvest in the morning. Stay tuned. Not finished yet.
After 24 hours ( or as little as two), rinse well, discard lime soak.
Back in the fridge with fresh water and ice. Handle them carefully. They will break.
Another thorough rinse. You can make your pickles now, or ice again and refrigerate. I will wait until after dinner to make my pickles. At this point, the slices are brittle and easily broken.
Fresh picked dill.
At this point, you can make your pickles by any recipe you like. I will share my method and recipe. Be warned: it is sour, sour, sour. I use the brine recipe from NCHFP Kosher Dill Green Tomato recipe. It has been vetted as a safe brine, 2 to 1, water to 5 per cent vinegar. I use less salt. I am making a double recipe because I make so many pickles it will be used. I will refrigerate the surplus for the next batch.
So, one gallon water, 1/2 gallon vinegar, 1/2 cup Kosher salt in a stainless steel pan. Do not use aluminum. I bring it to a boil then hold on simmer. You may add pickling spices if you like, I rarely do. Hold in mind I will be adding dill and garlic later. If you want more spices, add them to the brine.
Almost ready. I find it easier to assemble all my tools before starting. Water going in the cooker, brine coming to a simmer, lids in warm water, rings counted and washed, dill in ice water, garlic ready. Waiting on the dishwasher to finish.
To hot jar add generous dill head, 1/4 t minced garlic, cucumbers, hot brine to 1/2 inch headspace.
Don’t forget to debubble. Yes, the brine is in there. It is that clear. Wipe rims, add two piece lid.
Do one jar at a time. Place in cooker. Add more water to cover if needed. After water comes to a boil, set timer for 10 minutes pints.
All done. I will have 10 pints, 3 half pints. My next lime soak is underway. I will do this every 3 days until the cucumbers are done.