Friday, July 24, 2009

In a pickle

A farmer’s market recently opened in our neighborhood.  It is open every Friday from 3 – 7 and I try to stop by even if it is just to browse.  We live in the city, but we grew up in the rural, agriculturally-centered, Midwest.  Now, although I love the market dearly, –especially for the sense of community it is promoting in our neighborhood- I still have a hard time paying big city prices for fresh produce!  Yet, on the other hand, it is hard to not drool over the freshness and quality that I just can’t get at the grocery store.  So, as a compromise, each visit I try and treat our family to one item that is at the height of its season.  This week it was pickling cucumbers.  They looked nice and the price was right:  3 for $1.  Pickles 001

I used a standard freezer pickle recipe.  It uses only a few ingredients and makes up quickly.   I made a batch and a half which used only 6 of my pickling cukes.


Freezer Pickles

2 cups water

2 cups sugar

1 cup white vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

5 cups cucumbers sliced very thin with skin left on.

In saucepan, combine water, sugar, vinegar, and salt.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Turn off heat and let cool.  Meanwhile, wash and slice cucumbers.  Place sliced cucumbers in freezer containers leaving 2 inches headspace for expansion.  Divide syrup amongst containers, (do not overfill, but make sure cucumbers are mostly covered).  Crumple a square of waxed paper and place over syrup-covered cucumbers (see picture below), cover with tight-fitting lid, and freeze.  Thaw to serve.  Makes about 5 pints.

Pickles 006

  These are going to be a sweet, bread & butter type pickle.  They are good by themselves or excellent on a hamburger, tuna salad, or a cold roast beef sandwich.

Happy Pickling!


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