Thursday, August 14, 2014

Blue-Ribbon Amish Dill Pickles


I sprung upon a hot streak of luck yesterday and found a bunch of fresh heads of dill.
Admittedly, it can be tricky to come by.

I was at a local farm stand buying beans. They didn't have any dill out, so I asked the girl in the bonnet and she said nope, there was none. But, she thought the lady who owns the stand might know where I could get some.

Sure enough, she grabbed her scissors and walked behind her house!!!!!!

Moral of the story: Lots of people have dill, you just have to find them. And ask.

All of that to say, this will be my day today.

I'll be pickling.

We canned 12 quarts of these pickles last year and I wish I'd have had double.
These pickles - they will blow your boots off. People have tried to STEAL my pickles before, and that's no laughing matter. But it does underscore the insane addictibility and deliciousness of these delicious dills.

Are you nervous about canning pickles? Don't be.
It's super easy because you don't even need a canner. Since the acidity is high (love you so much, vinegar!) all you need is a nice, tall stock pot.

The jars, seals, and rings can be found this time of year at almost any grocery store.
Then grab a jug of ordinary, white vinegar and box of kosher salt and voila, you're practically Ma Ingalls, only with electricity and less sparkly eyes, but whatever.

You can't have too many jars of these sitting around. Impossible!
Or, blow your people away and gift them with a ribbon-tied jar of summertime for Christmas. You'll be everyone's favorite in all the land.

I adapted this Amish recipe over the past couple years and it's my hands-down favorite for life. 

Here's how you do it:

Scrub and slice your pickling cucumbers. (These can be found at farm stands and even grocery stores this time of year, or maybe even in your yard if your yard doesn't conspire to kill everything except clover.)

Put one peeled garlic clove on bottom of your clean jar, followed by a layer of pickles, a head of fresh dill*, more pickles & another garlic clove on top. Fill up to the neck of the jar.

(I try to really pack the cucumbers in, since they'll shrink down a bit as they cook.)

Combine 2 c. vinegar, 2.5 c. sugar, 2 c. water, 2 tsp salt. Bring all ingredients to boil until everything is dissolved. Pour over pickle in your jars.

***UPDATE*** This recipe yields a delicious, sweet-dill pickle. If you like less sweetness, cut the sugar back by a cup. (The original recipe is by no means a straight sweet pickle, but definitely a sweeter dill.) I love them both ways!

Wipe the rims of your jars then place a seal and ring over the mouths.

Add your jars to your stock pot with the water at *room temperature* (if the water is too hot, it can crack your jars) (UPDATE: Please see Carol's comment at the bottom of this post!) making sure the tops of the jars are covered with water.

Turn heat to high and watch closely. As soon as it begins to boil, start a timer for 15 minutes then remove the jars immediately with a jar lifter and place to cool on a towel on your counter.  (Don't overcook because you want these pickles to stay nice and crunchy.)

Some jars will come out of the water sealed, others you'll hear "popping" later. If you have any that don't seal for some reason (most will, but last time I had one that didn't) pop it in the fridge and eat those pickles! They're delicious and safe, just not shelf-stable.

This recipe makes 4 quart jars.

You're going to die for these pickles, guaranteed.
You'll also feel like some kind of rad earth-mama, storing up deliciousness for the winter.

Happy canning, homies!

*(In a pinch, I'm sure stems of fresh dill from the produce section would work just fine.)

PS - Even easier and just as fantastic and crime-inducing? These no-cook refrigerator pickles. YUM! (I always make some of both.)


*Amazon affiliate link used.

30 comments:

  1. These sound DELISH!

    I've been reading your blog for a while now...just never comment. Yes, my name is Libby, and I'm a lurker. lol Anyway, wanted to say love the blog!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Libby! Thanks so much for saying Hi. I love hearing from my friends!
      Now, go forth and can some pickles.

      Delete
  2. Between my salsa canning and your pickles ... together, we could totally raise a barn. Or make a quilt. Barn sounds easier, actually. ;) Anyway, thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  3. These looks so delicious! I have only had sweet homemade and they were amazing, so I have got to try my hand at making these!

    ReplyDelete
  4. You had me at "Ma Ingalls!" If it will make the the smallest bit like her (and you) then I am DOING IT!

    ReplyDelete
  5. This pickle post was the "kick in the butt" I needed today to star canning. Just now made a batch while my two little guys are napping.

    I added extra garlic, 3 shakes of celery seed and one shake of red pepper flakes. Can wait to try the!

    SO I said I was going to do this last summer..never did. Then this summer rolled around and I swore I would make them...didn't happen.But next summer I NEED TO MAKE YOU DAD'S TOMATO CAGES!!!!!!!

    My garden is an awful tangle of out of control 6 feet high tomato plants!!!! I was shocked I was even able to locate cumcumbers for this recipe in that tomato jungle.

    yes next summer is the summer. Love your blog. You do good .

    Kristy B

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love your idea of adding red pepper flakes!
      I added some sliced carrots to 2 jars today.
      Stay tuned... :)

      Delete
  6. Oh, this brought back memories of making pickles with my mother-in-law forty years ago...except she added grape leaves to each jar. I have NO idea what that accomplished, but, yes, her pickles were addictive. Now, I'm off to find heads of dill.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Grape leaves are to preserve crispiness. I just pour boiling brine into my stuffed jars, place lids and rings and they self-seal. No need to boil the actual pickles.

      Delete
    2. I know this is old but oh my gosh, THANK YOU for telling me this! I picked all the grapes from my vines and made jelly, but every year I have hundreds upon hundreds of leaves and I HATE wasting. I will try this next time!

      Delete
  7. I want to come to your parties and thrift store shop with you and I also want to eat your pickles. I wish we weren't a 34 hour road trip away or I'd be there.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Many recipes tell you not to eat the pickles for at least one month. What about this recipe?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I haven't heard that about these.
      The jar I had that didn't seal last time was eaten the next day and they were delish!

      Delete
  9. I made these a few weeks ago and I must have cooked them too long because they lost their crunchiness. I have a hot water bath container do you think it might take too long to warm the water and that's why they weren't crunchy? I have enough cucumbers to try it again this weekend, hopefully I can get it right! I'm dying for some homemade CRUNCHY dill pickles!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm...not sure? I use a big stock pot and it does take a while to get the water boiling. These aren't as crunchy as the refrigerator pickles, since they are cooked, but they should definitely not be mushy. Try the refrig ones if you're looking for a big crunch!

      Delete
    2. Try just pouring the boiling brine into the warm jars. They will self-seal.

      Delete
  10. You read my mind Shannan. Just picked some cucumbers from the garden and wanted to try pickling. Wish me luck!

    ReplyDelete
  11. You do not have to start your processing in lukewarm water. In fact, every canning recipe I have used for water bath canning has started to get your water to a boil THEN place your jars in the canner. The canning jars are designed to take the temperature changes for canning. I have canned hundreds of jars of product and can count on one hand the number of times a jar broke. And those were old jars that had been given to me. The last two summers I have put up at least 300 jars of product. And that is just in the last two summers. I have been canning for over 20 years so I have a little experience, :).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for this tip! I come from a long line of canners and they taught me this way, but my last batch of pickles wasn't the crunchiest so I'm happy to try your way next time. :) Appreciate you sharing your knowledge and experience here!

      Delete
  12. I just learned how to can yesterday with fresh peaches and peach preserves! I'm excited to try these! I can already tell that I will be making LARGE batches bc I have a bit of a pickle addiction.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am making my second batch of these pickles as I type. YUMM-O! Just the right everything. I have been letting my dill reseed for the past year or two, and now I have a bunch of dill I didn't know what to do with. Now I know why God has blessed me with all of this fresh dill....for these pickles. I usually give a lot of my canned goods away, but I think I am going to be selfish with these. Thanks for a great recipe!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I made your 10 Minute Pickles last week and they were amazing! I'm hoping to can the rest of my cucumbers tonight, I'm wondering why you don't put the pepper and mustard seed in this recipe? Does it just not need it because they sit for longer in the jar? Also, how long do they last on the shelf and then after opened and left in the fridge? Many thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Is there any reason why I shouldn't use this recipe for refrigerator pickles?

    ReplyDelete
  16. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Just made these. First time canning or pickling anything! How long before I can open them and eat them?

    ReplyDelete
  18. How many cucumbers do you use for this recipe?

    ReplyDelete
  19. Ok...I'm trying this tonight...wish me luck!

    ReplyDelete
  20. I just made these per the instructions and two of my jars cracked almost immediately after putting them in the boiling water. They were warm to start out with so I don't know what happened. So sad to waste all those home grown cucumbers :( just a word of warning to others who may be making these pickles. I've canned lots of things and have never experience this before. (The pickles taste amazing though- just be careful with your jars!)

    ReplyDelete