This recipe works for all kinds of veggies — string beans, carrots, even big jars of hot peppers — I pickle everything in September. It’s back-to-school time, and it’s the end of the jam season. I am always trying to squeeze every last drop out of summer to last us until next summer. Every year, I make at least 10 to 15 quarts of pickled goodness, and give them away for my friends and family to store in their fridges. These pickles are easy and perfect every time. I have never had a bad batch. Cut large cucumbers into slices to stuff the jars with, and make big spears for a fun variety of shapes and textures.
The recipe I use is from Duris Cucumber Farm in the Puyallup Valley, and it’s foolproof.
In a 1-quart jar, add the following in order:
1 grape leaf
1 stalk fresh dill, wound into a circle
3 to 4 cloves peeled garlic
1/8 of a sliced white onion
3 teaspoons pickling salt
2 teaspoons mustard seeds
15 whole black peppercorns
1 dried red chili pepper
¼ teaspoon alum
¼ fresh jalapeno
1 slice sweet red bell pepper, placed on jar wall
5 medium-sized cucumbers, blossom ends removed
2 to 3 small sized cucumbers, blossom ends removed
½ cup apple cider vinegar with at least 5 percent acidity
Fill each jar with tap water within ½ inch of the rim. Place a clean fresh lid on top and screw it down to secure. Shake each jar gently to dissolve powders. Store in the refrigerator. Pickles will be ready to eat in 3 to 4 weeks, and last up to 6 months.