Crunchiest Homemade Pickles

I love many things in life; one of those things is vinegar.

Anything from hot sauces, vinaigrette and obviously anything pickled.

This summer I took my try again at making pickles. I made them about three years ago but they were too mushy ( and what is worse than a soft pickle??). America's test kitchen is always a reliable source for tried and tested recipe,s and this recipe is a variation of their "dill pickle chip" recipe with my own twist.

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The main thing that made the biggest difference in these pickles was letting them sit in salt for an hour. This helps draw out moisture and keeps them crispy as heck.

Crunchiest Homemade Pickles

Ingredients

2 1/2 pounds of pickling cucumbers

2 tablespoons canning and pickling salt

2 cups of chopped dill plus for large sprigs

3 cups of  vinegar

3 cups of water

1/4 cup of sugar

4 garlic cloves peeled and quartered

Method

1.  Put cucumbers in a bowl with salt and put into the refrigerator. Drain is colander don't rinse and pat try with a towel.

2. Bundle chopped dill in cheesecloth and secure with twine. Bring the dill sachet, vinegar, water, sugar to boil in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Cover and remove from heat, and let steep for 15 minutes, discard sachet.

3. Meanwhile set in canning rack ( once again if you are bootleg like me just put a dish towel at the bottom to avoid jars having direct contact with the bottom of the pot). Bring to a simmer over medium high heat , then turn off heat and cover to keep hot.

4. Place dish towel flat onto counter. Using canning tongs remove jars from pot, draining water back into pot. Place jars upside down on the towel and let dry for a few minutes. Pack jar tightly with dill sprigs, garlic, and drained cucumbers.

5.Return brine to brief boil. Using a funnel and ladle, pour hot brine over cucumbers to cover, distributing spices evenly and leaving 1/2 inch head space. Slid wooden bamboo skewer alongside the jar, pressing slightly on the vegetables to remove air bubbles, and add a bit more brine if needed.

6. You can can these but honestly I ate them in a month.

7. To can them: When jars are warm, wipe rims clean and add lids to jar, screw on rings; however do not over tighten. Before processing jars. Lower jars into water, bring water to a slight simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Remove jars from pot and let cool for 24 hrs. Check seal, they can stored for up to 1 year ( good luck with that though).

Thanks for reading,

Sarah