There is nothing like making pickles yourself! They are so much better than store bought ones. And, cheaper too! With a few basic supplies, you can turn your home grown cucumbers (or store bought) into delicious pickles!
Before you start, you need a few basic canning supplies:
1. Hot water canner - They are about $18.00 from Walmart. You do not need a pressure canner to do basic canning.
2. Canning tongs - Ball Canning makes tongs that are specifically for lifting hot jars in and out of the hot boiling water. The pack also contains a magnetic lid lifter and a thingy for popping air bubbles in jelly. ("thingy" is my technical term)
Make sure to get pickling cucumbers. They are smaller than the other cucumbers and are grown especially for pickling. There are such things as "salad cucumbers", these are not the same, the pickles made out of salad cucumbers just do not taste as good.
10 lbs pickling cucumbers
1 package Mrs. Wages Dill Pickle Mix
12 pint sized canning jars with lids
1. Cut your cucumbers. Cut in 4ths for spears or thin slices for chips. Place in a large bowl of ice water with some kosher salt. Let sit for a hour.
2. Filler your canner half way with water and place on burner set to high. Be sure to cover with lid.
3. Prepare pickling mix according to package directions.
4. Pack cucumbers into jars, tightly.
5. Pour pickling liquid into jars, leaving and 1/2" space from the top of the jar.
6. Place lid and ring on jar. Do not over tighten.
7. Using tongs, place jars into boiling water.
8. Allow to sit in water for 10 minutes.
9. Remove jars and allow to sit until cool. Make sure that all of the lids have popped down. Some will pop after they have set for few minutes after being taken out of the water.
10. Store pickles in a cool, dark place until ready to use. Pickles will be ready to eat after 24 hours. Be sure to refrigerate any jars after opening.