Thursday 16 August 2012

Summer's Bounty!

I really feel lucky to be living in Ontario at this time of year!  Gardens and markets are fairly bursting with fresh, local produce and I have officially made it through twelve months of eating pure and natural foods.  I admit to the odd slip.  Lays potato chips and Helluva Good Dip are demons from hell!  But, I only fell off the wagon a few times.  Packaged stuff went out of my diet first and canned stuff followed.

So, be prepared for me to be obsessed with canning and freezing for the next while.  Right now, my kitchen looks like this. ~

There's no need for facials when you stand over these pots for a day! ~

Oddly, I don't eat dill pickles but my kids, grandkids and son-in-laws do and they say these dills can't be beat!

Here's the secret family recipe.  Oh, I guess that means it's not a secret any more! ~

Garlic Dill Pickles

3 Quarts water
1 Quart all natural vinegar (I use President's Choice All Natural)
1/2 Cup rock salt
1 Bunch dill
6 Quart basket of #2 size cucumbers (organic if possible)

Sterilize 6-9 quart sealer jars in a large preserving kettle.  You can do this a bit ahead of time and place them on a cookie sheet in an oven warmed to 200F. 
In a large preserving kettle, bring to a full boil, water, vinegar and salt.
Fill jars with washed cucumbers, a couple of heads of dill and 2 peeled garlic cloves.
Fill jars to top with boiling brine.Cap and let sit for 5 mins.
(Now here's the secret)
Dump the brine off the pickles and back into the preserving kettle.  Put the caps on the jars to keep the them sterile.  Bring the brine back to a full boil.  Refill the jars to the top with the brine. 
Hand tighten the rings and leave the jars to cool before moving them.  You will hear the lids snap shut. 
Leave for six weeks to "cure" before eating.

All measurements are in Imperial, so Google the conversions for US equivalents.

I think the key to the pickles greatness is the natural vinegar and the reboil of the brine.

I've done a half bushel of these babies and that's all they're getting this year!  The tomatoes are calling my name!

I'm sharing this with:  Inspiration Cafe


  1. Ok - seriously I am eating a jumbo bag of Lays chips and Philidelphia dip while catching up on my reading - talk about a guilt trip!!!
    Please send me a jar of those pickles Maureen!!!

  2. I can smell them as I run up the my best friends memory is that as a kid...her mom full on german...and the pickles where heaven....seriously I will have a good pickle over a cupcake...and you have a new follower....Now do you have a recipe for a great bread pudding....that I might have to have vs the pickle.....but it would be hard....

  3. WOW. WOWZA.
    You know Ive been hunting for these pickled cucumbers in our super markets but they somehow and always run out of stock. I'm making them Maureen. In fact I'll make them today. Thank you so much for sharing.

    It'll be going in the blog too :P

  4. That's a pretty good streak of fresh food. Yum, the pickles look amazing! Looks like a great batch. :) Thanks for stopping by OneDayOneImage

  5. Have put down thousands (literally) of pickles but never heard of re-boiling the brine. Brilliant! I must tell you how much I look forward to your blog and to a peek into your life. It never fails to touch me, or cheer me, or make me laugh or encourage me, or in today's case, give me the desire to make pickles. Thank you Maureen for sharing so much with us.

  6. I've never put up pickles, but I sure do like to eat them. What a nice bunch!

  7. I'm not a fan of pickles and I've never canned anything...but I want to someday. I do blanch and freeze a lot of stuff, so I'll stay tuned!

  8. Your pickles look yummy, I imagine them familied up with a tuna on rye. My grandma used to make Polish pickles when I was a kid. She used a big crock, it was filled with pickles and fresh dill she would put stale rye bread on the surface cover it with a huge plate with a rock placed on top. We would try to take a peek but she always caught us. It was hard waiting till they were ready, homemade kielbasa and one of those pickles , to die for! Happy canning to you.

  9. I made those same pickles last year and they were a hit! I found you through your HILARIOUS Woodstock comment you left on Suzq's blog! I see you are just as funny as she is!!

    Your newest follower!!!

  10. I've never made pickles and am in total admiration of you! They look awfully tasty.

    And don't get me started on chips and dip.


  11. you are a blogger of many talents! looking forward to hearing about what types of tomatoes you put up.

  12. Oh I love garlic dill pickles!!! I thought you could only buy them in stores LOL...You are going to so enjoy them all winter!


  13. I can just imagine how tasty this mouth is watering! Enjoy your weekend!

  14. If I grow any cucumbers this year that aren't bitter and nasty I am making these! Thanks for linking up over at the IC!

  15. Not even kidding, Maureen, last night I ate my last pickle from a jar bought at the store...first thing I thought was "wish I knew how to make my own dill pickles!" I had the best jar of pickles from our local apple orchard last fall, ever since then I have been craving homemade dill pickles. Such an AWESOME share at our very first Inspiration cafe Link Party! PINNING...and although I have only canned jams (once) - your post is so great, I know I can make my own dill pickles! Thank you!!!

  16. Maureen, thank you for sharing this awesome at the Inspiration Cafe and helping to make our first party a success! Sam and the Golden Child are the pickle lovers here!

  17. Maureen I love pickles - you make this look so easy! Awesome. Thank you for linking up to the Cafe xx Nat