If you’ve never tried making your own pickles, you should! It is worth it because they are SO much better than store bought! I grew up with homemade pickles, as my Mom & Grandma both made some every year. When I first tasted Darryl’s Mom’s pickles, I knew that I had to try this different recipe. This harvest season has brought with it an abundance of cucumbers, so I knew that I would be able to try Esther’s Famous Dill Pickle Recipe!
Step 1: Prepare the cucmbers: You will need to wash the cucumbers. Scrub any dirt off them! I also cut the vine tip off and remove the blossom if it is still attached. I was brought some cucumbers that were a little….. hmmm…….soft/bendy….. definitely NOT nice and crunchy! So, I called up my Grandma (because Grandmas know EVERYTHING! 🙂 ). Grandma told me to put the cucmbers in a cold water bath with some ice cubes. So, I spend the evening filling up the sink (filled with cucmbers) with cold water, putting ice cubes in, and just generally keeping the water cold! The cucumbers perked up, and were crunchy again in a few hours!
Step 2: Prepare Jars: I use a water bath method. Place your jars upside down in a pot, with no lids on them. Pour in a few inches of water, and bring to boil. Allow jars to boil in the water for a few minutes to sterilize them.
Step 3: Pack Jars: Remove a jar from water. Place 4 drops of Oil of Dill (or 1 head Dill), and 2-3 peeled Garlic Cloves into the bottom of the now sterile jar. Pack cucumbers into jar as tightly as possible. **Make sure to leave some head room so that the lid will fit on.
Step 4: Brine: Combine 9 cups Water, 3 cups Vinegar, and 1 cup Pickling Salt together in a pot. Bring to boil. Meanwhile, place lids and rubber rings in the hot water bath that the jars were in. Once Brine is boiling, you will fill and seal one jar at a time. Pour the brine into a jar until it is overflowing. (I always place the jar in a bowl so that the excess goes into the bowl, and I can then pour it back into the brine pot.) Once jar is full of brine, using tongs, remove the lid & rubber ring from the boiling water bath. Tighten onto the jar. Repeat this for however many jars you are making!
Step 5: WAIT!: Allow your jars to cool undisturbed for 24 hours. I’ve been asking My Mom, Grandma, and Esther (Darryl’s Mom) how long to wait until you can eat the pickles. I got answers of anywhere from 1 week to 6-8 weeks. I tried 1 jar after about 1.5 weeks, and they tasted GREAT!! Thanks Esther for entrusting me with this fabulous family pickle recipe!