Thursday, July 16, 2015

Bountiful Blessings! Day Three

Well I am soooo glad the cucumber tale is about to end!  Making Lime pickles and canning them is NOT for the faint of heart!  Was it worth it?  I would say YES!  We had some this eve with our eve meal and they were very sweet/tart and crunchy.  I would give the recipe a thumbs up!  You can see the recipe here.  

The pickles have stayed a pretty green color, which in the past when I have made a different recipe they did not.  All of the jars sealed....thank goodness!  I had on hands mostly quart jars so that is what the majority are.  I ended up with 11 quarts and 4 pints of pickles.  I really do like the way they taste.  I made the recipe three times to have enough liquid to soak all of the cucumbers.  I see many more cucumbers in the garden today, but believe I will see if anyone else wants them!!  (Thankfully a call to my neighbor and she came to the rescue, I hated to waste them!)

The recipe calls for the cucumbers to boil in the vinegar sugar bath for 40 minutes.  The kitchen certainly smelled like vinegar!  They were then packed into the sterilized jars.  A trick my mother taught me was to wipe the rim of the jar off with a clean wet cloth before placing the lid.  Another trick is to insert a sterilized table knife into the jar of pickles and move it around before the lid is placed to help get rid of any air bubbles.  I sterilized my jars in a pan along with the lids and rings.  

There are some tools that I consider essential when I can.  A magnetic wand is the best for picking up can lids and rings.  Certainly saves burnt fingers.  A tool which looks like tongs with a gripper to pick up the sterilized jars is another must.  I still have my mother's funnel, but for this pic could not find it, so instead used the green one.  

Fill the hot sterilized jars with the pickles.  I put just the pickles in first then added the liquid with my ladle.  Fill the jars to within 1/2 inch of the top, leaving what I call a header to allow steam to escape and the lids to seal.  

Lastly after the jars have sealed and cooled it is a good idea to loosen the rings.  I have made the mistake of not doing this and when they have set for awhile it sometimes is very difficult to remove the rings.  I also mark on the top of the lid what is in the jar and the year it was canned.  

A couple of the jars were of a quilted nature.  I had not ever used them so they still had their little red gingham lids.  I think these will make great gifts for someone.  Here are some pics I have taken of the finished pickles.

There is something definitely satisfying about the canning process.  It sounds so good to hear the little "clink" when the jars seal.  Trust your canning adventures will be a great experience too!   Enjoy your abundant blessings this summer!!  

My next challenge will be to find somewhere to store all of these jars!  

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