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This is a recipe that I've already requested twice, so I'm posting it to avoid losing it. My husband's best friend's mother makes them every summer and everyone just loves them. She makes them in ice cream pails. I prefer to make them in large jars (like the gallon jars that commercial pickles come in for restaurant use). The pickled onions taste great too! My husband and step-daughter used to fight over them! My dad's wife loves to use the pickles and the onions together on buttered bread for a pickle sandwich! I saw some similar recipes that claimed to be ready earlier, but noticed most didn't have any sugar. These aren't sweet like bread and butter pickles. We have snitched some from the jar earlier than a week, and they were good, but the best flavor is after a week or two. If your cucumbers aren't producing fast enough to make the whole batch, you can refrigerate the extra brine until you have more cucumbers, and then just reheat before using. I've tried these with sliced pickles, but I felt they ended up too sour to be used as hamburger dills, at least for my taste. I think they're best as spears or, if you're using small cucumbers, left whole.
- 3 quarts water
- 1 quart white distilled vinegar
- 1 cup canning salt
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- garlic clove, to taste. I use 4-8 cloves
- fresh dill, to taste. (at least 2-3 sprigs per bucket)
- onion, to taste. (I recommend 1 large per bucket)
- 16 cups pickling cucumbers, sliced into spears if using larger cucumbers
- 1 1⁄4 teaspoons alum
- Combine water, vinegar, canning salt, and sugar in saucepan and bring to boil. Keep hot.
- In the meantime, scrub cucumbers, cutting into spears if using larger cucumbers. Mince or crush garlic. (The smaller the pieces, the stronger the flavor). Slice onion.
- Pack cucumbers into buckets or jars, layering with garlic, onion, and dill. Sprinkle alum over the top.
- Poor hot brine over the cucumbers.
- Refrigerate at least one week before sampling. If kept in airtight container, pickles will keep for months in the refrigerator.
I have been asked for this recipe every time I share them with others. However, the original recipe is waaayy too salty for me. I use half as much salt. Don't skimp on the dill or garlic, either.
It's extremely unlikely that one would consume enough alum in these pickles to cause harm. Alum is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a food additive. It is unhealthful to humans in quantities greater than an ounce. There's only 1 1/4 teaspoons called for in this recipe that makes two entire buckets.
Just finished my 5th gallon of these this season alone. Left onions out of some, bumped up the garlic and everyone loves them. Excellent refrigerator pickle.